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On The Farm

A Sweet (Potato) Success Story for North Carolina

Sweet potato winners with blue ribbons at the N.C. State Fair Play Video

If you’ve enjoyed a silky, savory sweet potato during the last 40 years or so, chances are good that it was grown in North Carolina, where roughly 70% of all sweet potatoes in the U.S. are produced.

And if you haven’t eaten a sweet potato lately, now is the perfect time to reacquaint yourself. Once considered a seasonal food, making the occasional cameo during holiday meals, North Carolina sweet potatoes are now enjoyed year-round — in upscale restaurants, as a healthier alternative to French fries, and in products as varied as vodka, sausage and muffins!

North Carolina produces more sweet potatoes than all other states combined.

While the term “superfood” gets thrown around a lot — there’s no official definition by regulatory authorities — we all can agree that the sweet potato is truly a super food. From its vast and varied health benefits (it’s packed with vitamins, minerals and the antioxidant known as beta-carotene), to its economic benefits ($170 million annual impact and 5,000 jobs in North Carolina), it’s no wonder the sweet potato is the official state vegetable of North Carolina.

Watch as Mike Boyette, Philip Morris Professor in biological and agricultural engineering, sheds more light on these sweet spuds and how NC State helps our farmers grow, harvest and deliver them to your table.

Sweet Science

Call it a sweet potato renaissance of sorts, which NC State helped to bring about with the introduction of a new sweet potato variety, Covington, in 2005.

Life Cycle of a Sweet Potato

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