The Maine Potato Board and the University of Maine, Orono, released two potato varieties aimed at the processing market although they also can move into fresh channels.

The varieties—Easton and Sebec—were developed in partnership with the university, according to an article on the board's website. They are the first to be released by the university in the past decade and the first under the collaborative effort.

Easton was bred for the french fry market and tested as AF2001-6. It was a cross between Silverton russet and AF1668-60 made in 2002.

Easton is higher yielding than the standard french fry variety. It also has less hollow heart and fewer tuber defects than Russet Burbank.

Easton tubers are white fleshed, long to long-oblong in shape with a textured to lightly russetted skin.

Although it was developed for the french fry market, it has excellent flavor and can be boiled, mashed or baked, according to the website.

In addition, it hast good late-season vigor and resistant to Verticillium wilt. University research indicates Easton can be grown with about 25 percent less nitrogen and potassium than Russet Burbank.

Sebec was developed for out-of-field potato chip production and is billed as a replacement for Atlantic.

In field trials throughout the East since 2003, Sebec had high yields and proved widely adapted.

In addition to producing yields as good as or better than Atlantic, Sebec also had fewer internal tuber defects.

Sebec was developed for chipping right out of the field and does not produce blond-colored chips when stored.

This variety, too, has good Verticillium wilt resistance and has the flavor to move into fresh channels.