Breeding

US: Maine Potato Board, UMaine partnership unveils two new potato varieties

The Maine Potato Board and University of Maine this week announced the creation of two new potato varieties targeted at the french fry and potato chip industries. The new varieties — the Easton and the Sebec — were developed in partnership with the University of Maine over the past several growing seasons, Tim Hobbs, director of grower relations for the potato board, said Friday. “The Easton is the one that is the new french fry processing potato variety and it was named after the town,” he said, speaking of the potato farming community in northern Aroostook County. The variety was created at UMaine’s Aroostook Research Farm in Presque Isle. Field evaluations conducted since 2004 indicate that the Easton potato will produce higher yields and lighter-colored french fries than the current standard french fry variety. While french fry processing is expected to be the primary market for that variety of spud, it also has excellent flavor and is very good boiled, mashed or baked, according to the potato board. More