trace your UPSTATE ABUNDANCE POTATOES
Second-generation potato breeder Walter De Jong knows a winning potato when he sees one. Which is why, when he first spotted trial “NY150” among his field plots in 2004, he immediately took note. Walter’s goal at the time was to breed a more resilient potato, one that was high yielding and resistant to a variety of diseases plaguing potato growers in the Northeast. Walking the rows, Walter was surprised to discover one experimental line that yielded an unexpected bonus: an abundance of naturally small, golf-ball-sized potatoes with bright white flesh. By conventional market standards at the time, they were a little too small, but Walter thought that NY150 was something worth pursuing—a suspicion confirmed when he first tasted it.
Over the years, still deemed “unmarketable,” NY150 earned a quiet cult following, first within Walter’s lab, and then beyond. Growers praised its uncommon size, and chefs coveted its exceptionally creamy texture and nutty flavor. Released from Cornell as the Upstate Abundance, this potato was shared with our Trial Network, a participatory community of over 150 chefs and farmers. The network provided early feedback on the Upstate Abundance, enabling Row 7 to better predict where the variety will thrive and identify opportunities for future improvement. Today, the renamed “Upstate Abundance” remains Walter’s favorite eating potato.
Seed is a crop, too, and how they are grown matters. Our Upstate Abundance seed potatoes were produced organically by New York. These methods create strong, resilient plants capable of fending for themselves. Stronger plants literally are tastier plants. Want to grow your own Upstate Abundance potatoes? You can find the seeds here.
Flavor may start with the seed, but it lives or dies in the soil. In search of regional potato perfection, we turned to seasoned potato farmers across the Northeast: Pete’s Greens (NY), Norwich Meadows Farm (NY), Juniper Hill (NY), Chicory Creek Farm (NY), and Red Hill Farms (PA).These growers utilize organic methods to ensure the best-tasting tubers. The potatoes were shipped directly from the farm to Whole Foods, ready for your table.