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Idaho Potato Commission Launches 'Recipes for Relief' in Celebration of the International Year of the Potato
Date:2/8/2008

Celebrity Chefs Help Raise Awareness and $50,000 for UNICEF

EAGLE, Idaho, Feb. 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Chefs David Burke, Paul Prudhomme and Michael Symon are among eleven chefs sharing their favorite Idaho Potato recipes in the Idaho Potato Commission's "Recipes for Relief" on-line program. The goal of this unique program is to celebrate the United Nation's declaration of 2008 as the International Year of the Potato by raising awareness and $50,000 for UNICEF, an organization that provides lifesaving nutrition, clean water and education to children in more than 150 countries around the world.

Each month beginning in February, which is also Potato Lovers Month, a different chef and his/her recipe will be featured on http://www.idahopotato2008.org. Every time a visitor clicks on the recipe of the month, the Idaho Potato Commission will donate 10 cents to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF with a guaranteed donation of $50,000. Funds will support UNICEF's programs for children around the world. For more information on UNICEF, please visit http://www.unicefusa.org. The Recipe for Relief program will run from February -- December 2008.

"We are very pleased the United Nations is recognizing the importance of the potato in helping end world hunger. We know that children are particularly vulnerable to hunger and malnutrition which is why the U.S. Fund for UNIICEF is such a natural organization for us to work with," said Frank Muir, president & CEO, Idaho Potato Commission. "We are especially appreciative to our chef friends who jumped at the opportunity to help us communicate the importance of American's favorite vegetable while raising awareness and funds for the U.S. Fund for UNICEF."

"We are honored to be a part of the Idaho Potato Commission's efforts to raise awareness of the global importance of the potato and to be selected as the recipient of their fundraising efforts," said Caryl Stern, president and CEO, U.S. Fund for UNICEF. "With the funds raised by the Recipes for Relief program, UNICEF will be able to continue its important work saving children's lives."

Recipes for Relief Chefs

A total of eleven chefs will be featured in the Idaho Potato Commission's "Recipes for Relief" program. These well-known chefs hail from cities across the country and many of their Idaho Potato recipes reflect the region's unique tastes and flavors. Kicking off the program is Chef Michael Symon, owner of Lolita Restaurant in Cleveland, Ohio. The chef line-up to date is:

Michael Symon

Cleveland, OH

Lolita

Tracy O'Grady

Washington DC

Willow

Susan Spicer

New Orleans, LA

Bayona

Todd Downs

Indianapolis, IN

Food Sense, Inc

Frank Ostini

Buelton, CA

Hitching Post

Joachim Splichal

Los Angeles, CA

Patina

Paul Prudhomme

New Orleans, LA

K-Paul

Jon Mortimer

Boise, ID

Mortimer's of Boise

David Burke

New York

davidburke & donatella

David Walzog

Las Vegas

SW Steakhouse, Wynn

International Year of the Potato

The United Nations' declaration of 2008 as the International Year of the Potato will raise awareness of the importance of the potato -- and of agriculture in general -- in addressing issues of global concern, including hunger, poverty and threats to the environment.

With the world population increasing by approximately, 100 million people a year, there is an urgent need to find and/or develop the resources needed to sustain this incredible growth. The potato, which is the fourth largest food crop in the world, has been identified as part of the solution for many reasons:

-- Potatoes produce more nutritious food, more quickly, on less land, and

in harsher climates than any other major crop.

-- Potatoes are a nutrient dense food containing protein, carbohydrates,

vitamin C, potassium and many other micronutrients.

-- More and more people are relying on potatoes as a major part of their

diets. World potato production has increased at an annual average rate

of 4.5 percent over the last 10 years, and exceeded the growth in

production of many other major food commodities in developing

countries, particularly in Asia.

-- Potatoes are, or can be, grown in many countries around the world from

China's Yunnan plateau and the subtropical lowlands of India, to Java's

equatorial highlands and the steppes of Ukraine.

"When compared to other foods, the potato provides one of the best nutrient density returns for the cost of production," stated Muir. "The potato is rich in vitamin C, potassium, vitamin B6 and other important vitamins and minerals -- and uses much less water to grow than rice."

Helping Hunger Stateside

For many years the Idaho Potato Commission has been involved in several initiatives to promote potato consumption in developing nations. The IPC has been working closely with the University of Idaho on developing a fortified dehydrated potato product that could potentially provide sustenance and nutrition to millions of adults and children in developing nations around the globe through US food aid programs. The Commission has also actively been promoting Idaho Potato seed potatoes to countries in Asia and Central America.

UNICEF

For more than 60 years, UNICEF has been the world's leading international children's organization, working in over 150 countries to address the ongoing issues that affect why kids are dying. UNICEF provides lifesaving nutrition, clean water, education, protection and emergency response, saving more young lives than any other humanitarian organization in the world. While millions of children die every year of preventable causes like dehydration, upper respiratory infections and measles, UNICEF, with the support of partnering organizations and donors alike, has the global experience, resources and reach to give children the best hope of survival. For more information about UNICEF, please visit http://www.unicefusa.org.

The Idaho Potato Commission is a state agency that is primarily responsible for expanding the markets for Idaho grown potatoes through advertising, promotion and research. The Commission also protects the use of the "Idaho(R) Potato" and "Grown in Idaho(R)" seals, which are federally registered Certification Marks that belong to the IPC. These Marks ensure that consumers are purchasing potatoes that have been grown in the state of Idaho.


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SOURCE Idaho Potato Commission
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