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Bushmans’ potato program faring well despite challenges

With supplies running short, some Wisconsin red potato shippers approached mid-January filling orders with spuds purchased from elsewhere.

But grower-shipper Bushmans’ Inc. was still shipping from its own storage, Mike Carter, chief executive officer, said. Bushmans’ red potatoes “are holding well and the quality is good. We are not shipping from outside packing plants.” He acknowledged that Wisconsin’s red potato crop overall “has been a challenge this year” because of flooding in southern Wisconsin, which is heavy to red production. Some reds also are produced in the Antigo area.

Wisconsin weather in the fall “did us no favors. It’s difficult all over. We still have reds. They are part of our program.” Because of the nature of buyer expectations in today’s potato business, “you can’t run out anymore,” thus, shippers must fill preset orders one way or the other.

Carter said Bushmans’ russet supplies “look good.” The firm will finish its russets early, but will be shipping into June. He acknowledged that northwestern United States potato growers “seem to have a lot of potatoes in storage.”

Bushmans’ is “always looking at different marketing concepts.” While continuing its tray and microwavable potato packs, the firm continues to research other unique packaging to offer.

Bushmans’ is headquartered in Rosholt, WI.