The Smorgasbord: Pinto Gold

Published online: Aug 03, 2018 Seed Potatoes, Smorgasbord
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This article appears in the August 2018 issue of Potato Grower.

This month’s Smorgasbord looks at Pinto Gold, a just-released variety developed by the University of Maine Potato Breeding (initial cross from USDA-ARS research station in Aberdeen, Idaho). Pinto Gold is a high-yielding, yellow-fleshed specialty variety with excellent roasting and eating quality.

Tissue culture plantlets and nuclear seed are available from the Maine Seed Potato Board. Maine certified seed is currently available.


  • A99331-2 × USA147-96RY

Morphological Characteristics

  • Oblong tubers with smooth skin, shallow eyes and distinctive red and yellow “pinto” coloration patterns
  • Adapted to cool, northern growing areas and produces a high yield of small tubers under these conditions.
  • Large plants with medium-green foliage, red-violet flowers and late maturity
  • Bell- or pear-shaped, misshapen tubers are common
  • Moderate specific gravity (1.072 to 1.078) typically in an ideal range for the fresh market

Production and Marketing

  • Excellent roasted, but can also be used for boiling, pan frying and salads
  • Tuber texture can be described as creamy or waxy
  • Larger tubers excellent for baking

Disease & Defect Resistance

  • Good blackspot bruise resistance
  • Moderate resistance to shatter bruise
  • No major hollow heart problems observed to date
  • No major disease problems
  • Resistance to common Northeast potato diseases not yet identified


  • Typically does not produce good yields or quality tubers in hot climates
  • Susceptible to stem-end decay, which can be reduced with a uniform, moderate moisture supply