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The American Heart Association has certified that fresh Idaho potatoes meet its criteria for saturated fat and cholesterol, a significant milestone for an industry that had been hit hard by the low-carbohydrate diet fad.
“For years, the IPC has been working hard to communicate to consumers that Idaho potatoes are an important part of a healthy, nutritious diet,” said Frank Muir, Idaho Potato Commission president and CEO. “We’re proud that the American Heart Association, a revered and incredibly important health organization, agrees with us. The heart-check mark is the perfect complement to our ‘Grown in Idaho’ seal, a guarantee to shoppers that they are buying high-quality potatoes.”
AHA’s heart-check mark assures shoppers they are making a smart and heart-healthy purchasing choice; 73 percent of primary shoppers reportedly trust the AHA more than any other organization to certify food products.
The heart-check mark was created in 1995 to give consumers an easy, reliable system for identifying heart-healthy foods as a first step in building a sensible eating plan. Some 800 products that bear the heart-check mark have been screened and verified by the AHA to meet criteria for saturated fat and cholesterol.
One of the IPC’s initiatives to combat the anti-carb trend was to enlist fitness guru Denise Austin to serve as the group’s spokesperson. Today, Austin works closely with the IPC to remind consumers of the healthfulness of potatoes and the important role carbohydrates play as fuel for the body.
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.