So if you were driving by and saw this operation, you would surely think something important was going on. Well you would be right! It was potato harvest day at the NCRS. It is a mult-step operation that requires the help of several of the NCRS’s hard working staff.
Renae drives the digger that lifts the potatoes out of the ground. (FYI: that’s asparagus in the background).
And up the chain they go. These are ‘Snowden’ variety potatoes used for making potato chips. Michigan is one of the leading growers of chipping potatoes as well as a top producer of potato chips. One of every four bags of potato chips in the country contain Michigan-grown potatoes. (I’m so proud). And who doesn’t like potato chips? If you answer “no”, then go ahead and leave now. And that black thing is the drip tape that irrigates the plots. It is lifted out as well.
Jay and Tim B collect the potatoes from the plot in the baskets.
Zouheir is the man in charge, and was seen rushing around to make sure things went right and brings the bags to collect the potatoes. Slow down Zouheir! Did I mention that we are experiencing extremely warm weather, and the temperature was over 90? (Wasn’t I just complaining recently about how cold it was? Well I am always finding new things to complain about.)
Just like any plot harvest, they collect the production for weighing. In addition, potatoes need to be graded for size which will be done later. Larger size and uniformity are the goals.
This was a very important experiment testing some of our new products. So Zouheir will sort out the data and let us know what happened. This was a very nice looking plot all summer, and the preliminary yield calculations were very good. Hopefully we will learn something here to serve as a guide for potato growers to produce even more delicious chips.