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Focus on the image of Idaho Potatoes

 Grown in Idaho seal promotion by the Idaho Potato Council
A series of focus groups around the United States has confirmed to the Idaho Potato Commission that consumers have an extremely positive perception of Idaho and its famous potatoes.

But the focus groups have also revealed that because consumers don't put too much thought into purchasing spuds, a lot of people who assume they're purchasing Idaho potatoes might actually be buying them from a different state.

"One of the things we're finding out from these focus groups is that in the minds of consumers, potatoes come from Idaho,"said IPC President and CEO Frank Muir. "They are very enamored of Idaho. It's a mystique place to them."

That's the good news about the focus groups, which the IPC is holding in an effort to better understand consumers' thought processes when it comes to purchasing spuds.

The not-so-good news is that because other states don't advertise their spuds, consumers assume that every potato they buy comes from Idaho.

Muir said IPC commissioners hope to use information gleaned from the focus groups to better use the $5 million the group spends each year on advertising and publicity to convince consumers to choose Gem State spuds and look for the Grown in Idaho seal.

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The Idaho Potato Commission is a state agency with many responsibilities, including the promotion of Idaho Potatoes.