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Four Generations of Potato Growers

When Manitoba potato grower Terry Bailey walks through the frozen food aisle in a supermarket, he sometimes wonders how many of the french fries on display might have originated from his own farm. He’s been a grower for McCain Foods, the world’s french fry leader, in Carberry, Man. since 2004, when McCain acquired the area’s processing plant from Midwest Food Products. Prior to that, Bailey’s family grew potatoes for Midwest as well….

Fraser Valley Farm a Growing Concern

It takes some people most of their lives to find a career that is right for them. It took Pete Schouten considerably less time. “Apparently when I was seven I told my parents I was going to be a farmer,” he says, laughing. “I don’t know what it was. There was just a satisfaction in watching something grow I guess. I had some cousins who farmed and I thought that was kind…

Young Farmers Accentuate the Positive

Prince Edward Island potato growers Andrew and Heidi Lawless clearly know a thing or two about farming. They, along with Myron and Jill Krahn of Carman, Man., were named Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers for 2014, an award handed out annually to recognize farmers and farm couples who exemplify excellence in their profession. Spud Smart caught up with Andrew Lawless on the morning of June 11, when he was planting his last 30…

Potatoes in the Pampas

Situated in the fertile Pampas region of Argentina, El Parque Papas is a bustling potato business that produces and stores chipping and french fry stock for the processing market. It boasts a pair of the biggest names in the global potato market — McCain and PepsiCo — as its main customers. El Parque Papas currently supplies about 23,000 tonnes of chipping potatoes annually for PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division. In addition, it provides about…

Family Farm Deeply Rooted in New Brunswick Potato Belt

Ferm Givskud Farm Inc. has a long history of growing potatoes in New Brunswick. The third generation family farm near Grand Falls, N.B. has been in operation more than 85 years. “It was started by my grandfather, who came here in 1928 from Denmark. At that time it was mixed farm, potatoes and animals,” says current owner Mike Givskud. “In 1964, my father took over. He did mixed farming for one year,…

A Growing Business in Alberta

A lot has changed on Mike Wind’s southern Alberta potato operation since he started Windiana Farms back in 1990. For starters, the farm located near Taber, Alta., is much bigger. Initially it was 320 acres in size, but now Windiana comprises 3,600 acres of farmland — of that, 900 acres are dedicated to potatoes. “I started with a half section and have grown it to what it is today,” says Wind. “We…

Straight from the Field to the Store Shelves

Growing and selling fresh, local potatoes is the name of the game for Blair and Irene Lodder, who farm about 125 acres of potatoes in Grand Forks, B.C. “Today I dug potatoes and tomorrow the store will receive them,” Blair says. Lodder Potato Farms, which was started by Blair’s father, Tony, in 1956, trucks out potatoes daily to different grocery stores in the area, from Safeway and Loblaws to Quality Greens Farm…

Quebec Growers Renowned for Growing Yellow Potatoes

The potato growing operation Maxi-Sol Inc. is located in Saint-Paul de Joliette, Que., a 45-minute drive northeast of Montreal. Founded in February 2009, the company is co-owned and managed by Ninon Perreault and Francis Desrochers. “Maxi-Sol specializes in the production of table market potatoes,” says Desrochers, who is also the vice president of La Federation de Pommes de Terre du Quebec, the potato growers’ association in that province. “We cultivate a total…

Farming Aardappels in Alberta

For a country of its size, the Netherlands exports a surprising amount of agricultural products. In the case of the Hoogland family of Alberta, the country has also been known to export a few potato farmers, as well. Jacob Hoogland left his farm in the province of North Holland in the mid-1990s to see what opportunities there might be for a potato-farming family elsewhere. Holland is getting very expensive, he says, and…

Manitoba Farm Breeds Champion Potato Growers

Brock McIntosh has been around potatoes a long time. His dad and grandfather started growing potatoes at Mid-Man Farms in Carberry, Man., in 1965 — when McIntosh was just two years old — and he’s been a full-time farmer with the family operation since the age of 22. “My mom and dad made it possible for me to get into farming,” he says about his parents Don and Muriel, who still own…

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