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USA (national)

Idaho State Vegetable

Prepared potatos - click to see all state food symbols
Prepared potatos - photo by Scott Bauer (USDA Agricultural Research Service Image Library: Illustrations). See All Food & Agricultural Symbols - Food Holidays.

Potato

See Idaho potato video below

The potato was designated the official state vegetable of Idaho in 2002. Idaho's rich volcanic soil, water from melting snow in nearby mountains, clean air, sunny days and cool nights combine to produce consistently high-quality potatoes that have made Idaho famous worldwide. Americans love potatos - we each consume about 140 pounds of pototos per year in fresh and processed forms.

Potatoes are extremely versatile in cooking and are served in many forms including mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, boiled or steamed potatoes, French-fried potatoes, potato chips, scalloped potatoes, fried potatoes, home fries, hash browns, and potato pancakes.

Potato Facts and History

The potato is a native American plant, originating in what is now southern Peru (about three thousand varieties persist in the Andes of South America and there are about five thousand potato varieties world wide). The English word "potato" comes from Spanish patata (derived originally from the Nahuatl word potatl). The potato is now the world's most widely grown tuber crop, and the fourth largest fresh produce food crop (following rice, wheat, and corn).

Potato plant - click to see all food & agricultural symbols
Photo of potato plant by by Scott Bauer, USDA Agricultural Research Service Image Library: Illustrations. See All Food Symbols & Holidays.

The potato was introduced to Europe about 80 years after the first voyage of Columbus in 1492. Once established in Europe, potatos became an important food staple and field crop. Lack of genetic diversity (due to the fact that very few varieties were initially introduced) left the crop vulnerable to disease, resulting in the Great Irish Famine.

 

Idaho Symbols & Icons:

bird - raptor
fish - insect
horse - fossil
stone - gem - soil
flower - tree
fruit - vegetable

flag - seal
motto - quarter
name origin
nickname
song
folk dance
 

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The Enormous Potato
The Enormous Potato: Folk tales give us hope.
They show us that we can succeed in spite
of apparent problems. ... more

POTATO cookbook
POTATO; potatoes are a versatile ingredient in
any cook's kitchen - layered in a creamy gratin,
shaped into rustic gnocchi with pesto, or
puréed into a comforting soup 5 star review!... more.

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