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Retail produce department leaders nationwide are once again invited to unveil their most “spudtacular” theme displays in February for the Idaho Potato Commission’s 23rd annual Potato Lover’s Month Retail Display Contest.
Boosting potato sales is just part of the "appeeling" rewards for retailers entering the nation’s largest vegetable display contest. Indeed, IPC will award a total of $150,000 in cash and prizes ($34,000 in cash prizes alone) for the winning displays, while all participants will receive a free BlueROCK wireless Bluetooth speaker with auxiliary and charging cables included.
For the second year in a row, IPC has teamed up with Hormel Real Bacon Bits to feed consumers’ appetite for bacon along with their favorite spud dishes. Accordingly, each display must combine fresh Idaho potatoes, Idaho dehydrated potato products and Hormel Real Bacon Bits alongside official IPC point-of-sale materials, including two round double-sided Potato Lover’s Month logo signs, a large and a small double-sided sign with an appetizing baked potato photo, and two inflatable mylar Spuddy Buddies.
“A steaming hot Idaho baked potato topped with crunchy bacon bits is the perfect winter pick-me-up for family dinners,” notes Jamie Bowen, IPC marketing manager. “Spicing up the produce department with an imaginative, colorful display featuring these two great tastes is a great way to turn up the heat on February sales. Our retailers have found that their Idaho potato displays really pay off for them throughout the entire produce department.”
Take last year’s top show-stopping displays (see related gallery below), which featured a floor-to-ceiling “castle” display guarded by Spuddy Buddies, a scaled-down version of the Great Big Idaho Potato Truck that toured the country spreading spud fever, and an “American Idol” themed display starring Idaho potatoes. Other display contest entries have run the gamut from football fields filled with potato players to smoking “volcanoes” in honor of Idaho’s much-vaunted volcanic soil.
Retailers will compete with other same-size stores in one of three categories: 1-5 cash registers, 6-9 cash registers, or 10+ cash registers. Entrants within each store category are eligible to win the following prizes:
1st place – $1,500
2nd place –$1,000
3rd place – $750
4th place – $500
5th place – $250
Category Manager Match Program
In addition, the category manager match program will award equivalent cash prizes to category managers at stores that qualify for a first through fifth place prize. One hundred displays selected from the remaining entries will win honorable mention prizes of $100.
Contest deadline is March 15, 2014. Complete rules and contest details can be found on IPC’s website.