NMSU researchers aim to grow better potatoes

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KRQE) – The potato is a food favorite, but when it comes to nutrition, could it be improved?

That’s what a U.S. Department of Agriculture researcher as well as New Mexico State University researchers want to find out.

They’ve teamed up to see if a more nutritious potato, similar to ones in South America, can be grown in New Mexico.

The type of potato in South America includes something called “carotenoids” that can help with macular degeneration and mental health.

One hundred fifty breeding lines have been planted in Las Cruces and Los Lunas to see if they could be produced for the public.

“This is a very beautiful, helpful specialty potato and I anticipate that particularly small scale growers here in New Mexico are going to be very excited to have this additional offering when they’re selling their produce at the local farmers market,” said Stephanie Walker, NMSU Extension Vegetable Specialist.

The potato is the number one vegetable consumed by Americans.

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