HEYBURN, Idaho — This summer and fall, Robert Tominaga is selling his 35th potato crop.
The vast majority of those have been russet crops. But six years ago, Tominaga, president of Southwind Farms, and his partners — his brother Jerry, the company’s vice president, and Rod Lake, secretary/treasurer — started growing and marketing fingerlings.
Lake still grows russets on his own, but Southwind, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, is 100% fingerlings. And with the company’s success, who could blame them?
Acreage is up 20% this year, and Robert Tominaga said the company will have no trouble moving all those extra little spuds.
To celebrate its 15th anniversary, Southwind plans to launch a recipe contest at Booth 4114 at the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit convention in October, Tominaga said.
The effort is being spearheaded by Sherise Jones, who was brought on this year to handle special marketing projects for Southwind on a contract basis, Tominaga said.
When Southwind opened for business 15 years ago, the company had less than 1 acre of spuds. Now it has 700 acres.