Grow Your Own Potatoes (GYOP), the primary school-based potato growing initiative, has announced that long-time supporters, McCain Foods, are to be joined by retail giants Tesco as well as potato suppliers Branston, E Park & Sons and Puffin Produce in sponsoring the programme in 2023. Working collectively, this funding will enable 8,000 free potato growing kits to be made available for primary schools nationwide.
Recent changes within the potato industry resulted in the funding for the GYOP programme coming to an end. Andrew Skea, Managing Director at Potato House (the new home of GYOP), and a keen supporter of the programme for several years, saw the need for it to continue and put out a plea for industry to work together to keep it running.
Andrew said: “We are extremely grateful to our partners for getting behind this fantastic initiative. Not only will they be helping to make a difference to the way children view their food, at an early age, developing healthy eating habits that will stay with them as they grow. With their help we now have the potential to reach 240,000 children with positive messages about potatoes – messaging that benefits the whole sector.”
Sue Lawton, Project Manager at GYOP commented: “GYOP has made a positive impact since its inception, reaching well over six million children. The project targets children at an influential age, combining classroom theory with fun, hands-on activity. With this funding, we are now able to continue the work in helping to keep potatoes in the hearts and minds of the next generation of consumers.”
GYOP is always looking for industry support, not only with sponsorship, but also to widen the project’s reach. Why not encourage your local schools to get involved
- Visit your local primary school and get them signed up to take part
- Help them with chitting and planting their seed potatoes (March 2023)
- Be a point of contact through the growing process helping answer any questions they may have
- Help with harvesting their crop (June 2023).
To get involved with GYOP and join together to support the future demand for potatoes, please contact Sue for more information on email@example.com.