Idaho Potato Commission increases staffing in response to growing global demand
by | November 29, 2010
Following six years of unprecedented growth for Idaho potatoes in
international markets, the Eagle, ID-based Idaho Potato Commission has
hired Amanda Albers as its first international marketing manager and has
established new offices in Mexico, Hong Kong and Malaysia.
The main objective of the commission's expanded international division will
be to mine opportunities in foreign markets and provide assistance to Idaho
potato shippers wishing to export fresh potatoes overseas.
U.S. fresh potato exports have reached an all-time high of $150 million
dollars annually, and that number is expected to increase rapidly over the
next several years. With Idaho being among the larger potato-producing
states in the country, it is more critical than ever that the commission provide
resources to Idaho shippers to help them capitalize on the growing worldwide
demand for fresh potatoes. Today, through concerted efforts, Idaho
commands 33 percent of the Mexican potato market and exports fresh
potatoes to Canada, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia, Singapore, Puerto Rico, the
Caribbean and Central America.
"Our attention and focus on international has allowed Idaho shippers and
processors to expand their business beyond historical borders," Seth Pemsler,
vice president of retail-international, said in a Nov. 30 press release. "With
the addition of Amanda and her extensive international trade experience at
the Idaho State Department of Agriculture and our partners overseas, the IPC
will be able to further increase its presence in the international trade market,
ultimately increasing sales and margin for the entire Idaho potato industry."
Working from the Eagle office, Ms. Albers will be responsible for continuing
the growth of Idaho potato exports in core markets like Mexico and Central
America and for developing opportunities for the famous potato in emerging
countries like Russia, South Korea and China. Prior to joining the commission,
Ms. Albers organized and coordinated international consumer promotions
such as buying missions, trade show pavilions and governor's trade missions
to help increase export opportunities for Idaho food and agriculture
The commission's representatives based in Mexico, Hong Kong and Malaysia
• Serve as the agent for Idaho potatoes in their respective markets by
identifying opportunities and developing trading partners for Idaho shippers.
• Develop and execute promotional programs in conjunction with the
commission and provide ongoing marketing support to overseas retailers and
• Provide market research and assistance with import-export rules and