Growers to go 'back to school'

Growers are being told to go back to school to support the biggest-ever educational project for primary schools run by the Potato Council.

Grow Your Own Potatoes will see growers host school trips, help classes plant and harvest crops and give presentations on growing.

The programme, for pupils aged up to age 11, is targeting 15,000 schools and 450,000 pupils - 3,000 more schools and 75,000 more children than last year. This will draw around half of all primary schools in Britain into the scheme.

Marketing officer Sue Lawton said: "As well as increasing the number of schools taking part, we are campaigning for greater industry involvement."

This year, Askern Spa Junior School in Doncaster and Herne Church of England Junior School in Kent topped the growing chart with crops of 4,988g of rocket and 3,600g of Vales Emerald.

The Potato Council said: "Growers who have taken part tell us the experience is extremely rewarding and helps children connect with the potatoes they see in the shops and on their plates."

It offers growers a guide to presenting in schools containing tips and advice, classroom activities and facts and nutritional information about potatoes. The council added: "We also urge greater interaction with local agricultural societies as many run their own Grow Your Own Potatoes events and are looking for additional support."

Those interested in supporting the scheme can get more details from Sue Lawton on 02476 478774 or email

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