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Black Gold Farms kicks off red potato harvest in southeastern Missouri

Black Gold Farms, a fourth-generation family farm based in Grand Forks, ND, that grows, ships and markets a variety of potatoes and other commodities, kicked off its fresh red potato harvest in southeastern Missouri the last week of June. The first few days of harvest has shown a lot of promise for this year’s red potato crop. With excellent quality in the fields and manageable weather, Black Gold Farms anticipates a very successful season.

JohnHalverson PackShedJohn Halverson “I’m excited about what’s in the field this year,” John Halverson, chief operating officer of Black Gold Farms, said in a press release. “We had some challenges at the beginning of the season due to late planting, but I’m very optimistic about what we’re seeing. The quality is exceptional and the yields are big. Our team has done what they needed to do all year to prepare for this month in the packing facility and in the field.” 

Planting was delayed in Missouri and Arkansas by about 4 weeks this spring due to the heavy rain and cold weather. The packing facility has the ability to pack several different sizes of poly, cartons and sacks. Harvest will continue through the end of July. Black Gold Farms will then transition to Indiana-grown red potatoes.

“We’ve been able to learn a lot about growing potatoes in the summertime heat from our chip potato experience,” Halverson continued. “We’re able to transfer those leanings to the fresh market. While there are many differences, the principals are the same: use the right variety, get the timing correct, push them through the wash line and into the cooler as soon as possible, and then ship to our customers while they are still fresh.”

Keith Grove, fresh sales manager of Black Gold Farms, added, “Our customers really find value pulling fresh reds out of Arbyrd, Missouri as the quality is consistent, we are geographically centered around many of the major cities which provides locally grown opportunities. Customers recognize that Black Gold Farms is the red potato expert.”

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