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Industry Backing For Education Project Grows


Grow Your Own Potatoes, the largest primary school growing project from the potato industry, is well on its way to smash targets for 2010! But there is still time for industry to recruit local schools before registration closes on 5 February 2010.

Over 10,000 primary schools have already registered at to take part in the scheme, which successfully helps to educate young children about potatoes. This year, Potato Council has encouraged even more key figures and organisations to participate and lend their support to the project.

With partnerships formed with the Farming & Countryside Education (FACE), the British Nutrition Foundation and Peter Seabrook MBE, Gardening Editor of The Sun newspaper, Grow Your Own Potatoes is on course to reach more young children and build their understanding of where potatoes come from, how they grow and their role in a healthy balanced diet and of course, build future demand for potatoes.

Since the project began, and through committed industry support, over 750,000 children have taken part and it is now being replicated around the world. Planting takes place in March and in June, classrooms unearth their crop. This year there are amazing prizes on offer, such as an allotment makeover for the school that yields the heaviest crop and runner-up prizes of eco-friendly picnic tables and playground benches.

Bill Graham, FACE Head of Education says: There is no doubt that Grow Your Own Potatoes is a flagship project that is really making a difference. The key to its success is that it is just so easy to take part and the project can be incorporated into the curriculum in a wide variety of ways. I look forward to the time when all schools will be taking part in this scheme.

Peter Seabrook, MBE, VMH, AHRHS adds: “Youngsters love growing potatoes and there is great excitement come harvest time to see what tips out of the pots. Seeing is believing and growers should try to visit a school in their area to experience how worthwhile the Potato Council scheme has proved to be.

Growers and processors can get involved by distributing recruitment flyers, available from Potato Council, or becoming a school buddy and assisting with planting and harvesting.

If we want to continue to build demand for potatoes in the future, then educating youngsters NOW is vital. Encourage schools to visit or lend your support to the scheme by contacting Sue Lawton at Potato Council on 024 7647 8774 or

Potato Council, supporting the British potato industry, is funded by potato growers and trade buyers and is a division of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (

The Grow Your Own Potatoes project supports the primary school curriculum with a focus on the importance of a healthy balanced diet, where food comes from and how things grow. 

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