Idaho Potato Retail Display Contest Winners Announced

Published online: May 18, 2017 Articles Idaho Potato Commission
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An all-expenses-paid vacation for two on Celebrity Cruises was awarded to each of the top six winners in the Idaho Potato Commission’s (IPC) 2017 retail display contest, which also featured partner product Hormel Real Bacon Bits.

“All the winners were really excited to hear they were going on a cruise with an ocean-view stateroom,” says IPC marketing manager Jamie Bowen. “They definitely deserve it, because we had so many entries this year with wonderful graphics, in addition to the truly creative themes that retailers came up with. And we love to hear about how these fun Idaho potato displays are a big attraction with their customers, leading to higher sales.”

Nearly 5,000 retailers took part in the nine-week competition from mid-January to mid-March. KVAT Food Stores 694 in Knoxville, Tenn., which took first place among stores with 10 or more cash registers, loaded up its award-winning display with original artwork from produce manager David Scarlett that included a hanging loaded baked potato illustration, the IPC’s Spuddy Buddy mascot and Hormel Real Bacon Bits cutouts, and a colorful hand-lettered sign proclaiming, “Wait till you get a load of us!”

“I came up with the idea from Jack Nicholson’s quote as The Joker [in the 1989 movie Batman]: ‘Wait till they get a load of me!’” says Scarlett. “The display definitely created a lot of excitement, as well as significant growth in sales for our Idaho potatoes.”

Retailers competed with other like-sized stores in one of three categories: one to five cash registers, six to nine cash registers, or 10 or more cash registers. Within each store category, entrants competed for these prizes:

  • First place: All-expenses-paid Caribbean cruise for two
  • Second place: $1,000
  • Third place: $750
  • Fourth place: $500
  • Fift place: $250
  • Honorable Mention: $100 (100 selected from remaining entries)

In addition, the Category Manager Match Program awarded equivalent prizes to corporate category managers for stores that qualified for first- through fifth-place prizes, and everyone who entered the contest received a free Marley Chant mini portable Bluetooth audio speaker system.

Each in-store display was required to incorporate clearly marked fresh Idaho potatoes (bag, bulk or both), an Idaho dehydrated potato product and Hormel Real Bacon Bits, plus IPC point-of-sale materials including Potato Lover’s Month logo display signs and inflatable Mylar Spuddy Buddy balloons. Retailers had to showcase the display in their store’s produce section for at least one week between Jan. 16 and March 17. 


First-Place Retail Display Winners

One to five cash registers

William Roller

Community Market #590

Greenfield, Ohio

A Ghostbusters-themed display scared up more customers for Community Market #590 in Greenfield, Ohio, which spirited away with first prize in the one to five registers category of the competition.

“The nicer [our display] looks, the more our guests purchase,” says produce clerk William Roller


Six to nine cash registers

Julie Bolton

Kroger J-915

Elkhart, Ind.

Kroger J-915 in Elkhart, Indiana, paid homage to the IPC’s Big Idaho Potato Truck with its winning entry in the six to nine registers category, featuring potatoes displayed in a handmade re-creation of the traveling truck, complete with a beaming Spuddy Buddy cutout on top.

“We had customers taking pictures of the display all the time,” says Julie Bolton, the store’s produce lead


Ten or more cash registers

David Scarlett

KVAT Food Stores 694

Knoxville, Tenn.

“The display created a lot of positive comments from our customers,” says David Scarlett, the store’s produce manager.


Click here to view more prize winners from this year’s competition.