R.D. Offutt exec tapped as Potatoes USA chairman
Western exec for country's largest potato farming organization to lead group representing 2,500 commercial growers.
Marty Myers of Boardman, Ore., an executive for Fargo, N.D.-based R.D. Offutt Co., on March 11 was elected board chairman of Potatoes USA at its 48th annual meeting. He’ll serve through 2021.
Potatoes USA, based in Denver, works for 2,500 commercial potato growers operating in the U.S. It promotes five main potato products: fresh table-stock potatoes, fresh chipping potatoes, seed potatoes, frozen potato products and dehydrated potato products. Established in 1971, the marketing and promotion board for the U.S. potato industry and describes itself as the “largest vegetable commodity board.”
“The potato industry truly is unique,” Myers said, of his work. “It is a young, vibrant and diverse group,” Myers said. He acknowledged the COVID-19 challenge.puts his focus on “helping the U.S. to fulfill the potato needs of the American people and helping the potato industry through this difficult time.”
Myers previously served on the 99-member board for a six-year term from 2010 to 2016 and chaired its International Marketing Committee for two of those years. He began his current term in 2017 and chaired the International Marketing Committee for another three years.
Myers is R.D. Offutt’s western business manager for farming and agriculture. He oversees the company’s operations in Oregon, Washington and Nevada. Myers has been in the potato industry for 24 years. He works for R.D. Offutt’s Threemile Canyon Farms at Boardman and focuses on the chip, frozen and seed sectors.
R.D. Offutt Co. controls farmland in 12 states — a total of 190,000 acres including 60,000 potato acres under irrigation. The company is the nation’s largest producer of potatoes, employing 1,700 people, according to the recently published book, “Innovative Entrepreneurs of North Dakota and Northwest Minnesota,” by Hiram Drache and Bruce Gjovig.
Among the executive committee members from the region include Steve Streich of Kalispell, Mont., co-chair of the International Marketing Committee and Heidi Randall of Friesland, Wis., co-chair of the Industry Outreach Committee.