Giving Thanks

Published in the November 2009 Issue Published online: Nov 06, 2009 Tyler J. Baum
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For most of you, the potatoes are out of the ground and now in storage, waiting for transport. For a handful of you, the growing season has just begun. Because of climate, you're able to fill in the time of year when most industry acreage is dormant, trapped in snow pack. Whatever your circumstances are right now, I hope that you're stopping to reflect on the blessings that are still there, sometimes unnoticed, in your operation, your family and your health.

Even though national unemployment is creeping into the double digits, we're still doing our thing. We've still got a product to grow-and sell-that people need to buy, whether times are good or not-so-good. People still need to eat, and the potato is a remarkably diverse vegetable, packed with nutrients, that sometimes makes it more of a starch than a vegetable!

As this holiday season approaches, I know I'm reflecting on the blessings I have. In the months before I became the editor of this magazine, which was last February, I was on staff for the boating magazines our parent company also publishes. Now I have to chuckle when some people ask me what I did to get a demoted from a boating magazine to a potato industry magazine.

Any way I look at it, it was a promotion.

The industry that put food on my table growing up-figuratively and literally-is the industry I've come home to, but now I'm in a position to do more good than before. I'm definitely thankful for this industry, for all the good, hard-working people behind the scenes who make this industry what it is.

Are you grateful? I know how busy you are-even during the off-season-but take a minute to appreciate the blessings you have. I know I do.

Speaking of thankful, if you haven't already registered for the Potato Expo 2010, you'd better do it now or you'll have one less thing to be thankful for! This year's industry Expo sounds to be really exciting, located at the Loews Royal Pacific Resort, at Universal Studios, in beautiful Orlando, Fla. The keynote speaker is none other than the hilarious Dave Barry, who's defined the newspaper humor column. I'll try to control myself so I don't come off acting like a celebrity-smitten groupie when I see him, but I make no guarantees.

If your spouse and kids are coming along, you're sure to be jealous of them. While you sit in industry meetings-which will surely be informative and interesting-your family will be touring the Kennedy Space Center and having lunch with an astronaut! Plus, there's Universal's newest thrill ride, the Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit, and a fun night out in a New York-style street party.

You won't want to miss the Expo any year, in any location, but this one you'll definitely kick yourself if you don't attend.

Hope to see you there!