By Idaho Potato Commision
Eagle, Idaho — After traveling 35,350 miles for eight months promoting America’s favorite vegetable, the Big Idaho® Potato Truck has officially completed its eighth season on the road. During its cross-country trek, the 4-ton spud participated in 54 scheduled events in 50 different cities and donated $12,500 to 25 local non-profits through its charitable program, A Big Helping.
“The Big Idaho® Potato Truck was only supposed to be on the road for one year to celebrate the Idaho Potato Commission’s 75th anniversary. Here we are eight years later and folks are scheduling the Truck two years out,” said Frank Muir, President & CEO of the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC). “By definition we have reached pop culture status — a product or brand that has mass accessibility and appeal. Last fall the popular television show American Idol invited us to participate in their auditions in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. It doesn’t get much bigger than that!”
While it’s impossible to count all the people who experienced the Truck either at events or traveling on America’s highways and byways, the estimated reach was close to 2 million and is measured by social media engagement, event attendees and media impressions.
This year the Big Idaho® Potato Truck attended three events with more than 300K attendees:
- Pegasus Week and Kentucky Derby (Louisville, KY)
- NASCAR Bristol and Family Nights (Bristol, TN)
- National Memorial Day Parade (Washington, D.C.)
Nine events with more than 100K attendees:
- Mazda IndyCar (St. Petersburg, FL)
- Mazda IndyCar (Indianapolis, IN)
- Atlanta St. Patrick’s Day Parade (Atlanta, GA)
- First Ever 16th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade (Hot Springs, AR)
- McDonald’s Houston Children’s Event (Houston, TX)
- NASCAR Poconos (Poconos, PA)
- Thunder Over Louisville (Louisville, KY)
- America’s Birthday Parade and Celebration (St. Louis, MO)
- Dublin Irish Festival (Dublin, OH)
And several other highlight events including:
- Ryan Seacrest Studios (Nashville, TN)
- Bear World (Rexburg, ID)
- West Virginia Strawberry Festival (Buckhannon, WV)
- Winona Steamboat Days (Winona, MN)
- 100th Anniversary Reno Rodeo (Reno, NV)
In total, the 2019 Big Idaho® Potato Truck tour generated more than 200 million media impressions, and continues to reign as the IPC’s most successful marketing campaign, ever. Everywhere it goes, it promotes the nutritional value of Idaho’s famous potatoes and reminds folks to look for the “Grown in Idaho®” seal to be sure they are purchasing genuine Idaho® potatoes.
After eight years on the road, the Truck continues to have a lasting impact on the communities it visits. In total, it has delivered some impressive numbers:
- The average tour length is 6 months
- The Truck has traveled approximately 248,000 miles
- Attended events in 701 cities/towns
- Participated in 49 events with over 300,000 people in attendance
- Participated in 85 events with over 100,000 people in attendance
- “A Big Helping” has donated $79,500 to 150 charities across the country
- Millions have taken pictures of the Big Idaho® Potato Truck on their mobile devices
- The team receives appearance requests from fans, festivals and events all over the country on a daily basis
- Total media coverage to date is in the billions!
The 2020 Big Idaho® Potato Truck Tour schedule will be released in early February 2020 at www.bigidahopotato.com.
About the Idaho Potato Commission
Established in 1937, the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) is a state agency that is responsible for promoting and protecting the famous “Grown in Idaho®” seal, a federally registered trademark that assures consumers they are purchasing genuine, top-quality Idaho® potatoes. Idaho’s growing season of warm days and cool nights, ample mountain-fed irrigation and rich volcanic soil, give Idaho® potatoes their unique texture, taste and dependable performance. These ideal growing conditions are what differentiate Idaho® potatoes from potatoes grown in other states. For more information, visit www.idahopotato.com.