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The Canadian Potato Museum is the happy recipient of a $49,500 donation from a joint promotion between Prince Edward Island Farm, W.P.Griffin Inc. and Sobeys.

During the February Potato Lovers Month promotion, Sobeys and Foodland outlets throughout Atlantic Canada sold 10-pound bags of W.P. Griffin potatoes, donating 25 cents from every bag purchased to the museum.

W.P. Griffin Inc. supplied the Heritage Netted Gems. The farm, located in Elmsdale, is a family-run operation, with approximately 3,000 acres dedicated to potatoes, grains and soybeans.

John Griffin is the company’s president and general manager, but the farm is perhaps best known by the character gracing some of its potato packaging: Bud the Spud.

According to the farm’s website, “W.P. Griffin Inc. packages many different varieties of potatoes in various sizes in traditional paper, poly, mesh and poly-mesh bags under brand names such as ‘Griffin,’ ‘Dole’ and ‘Bud the Spud.’“

John Griffin saw the promotion as a win-win situation for the farm. In a press release, he thanked consumers for supporting the museum by buying the company’s potatoes, noting the farm is proud to support the Canadian Potato Museum.

“We strive to raise awareness of the museum to the public and hopefully increase attendance,” he said. “The Museum is an excellent facility that has made an excellent effort in preserving the history of the potato industry in Canada.”

The farm’s promotion partner, Sobeys, is one of the larger retailers in Canada, but has roots in the Atlantic region. The grocery chain was founded in Stellarton, NS, by John W. Sobey in 1907 and today is still headquartered there. The company has over 1,300 supermarkets operating under a variety of banners nationwide, including Foodland.

Those Atlantic roots were an important part of the February promotion. In a press release, Kevin Kane, produce and floral specialist for PEI and Northern Nova Scotia at Sobeys, said, “Sobeys is committed to serving our communities and buying local. The ‘Potato Lovers Month Event’ did both in partnering with W.P. Griffin Inc. to raise funds for the Museum.” Mr. Kane noted the firm’s Sobeys and Foodland outlets had delivered even more than expected, making the joint campaign very successful.

Museum Director Bill MacKendrick agreed with that assessment. In a press release, he stated, “The Canadian Potato Museum is ecstatic with both the exposure and monetary contribution realized through this promotion. [It] demonstrates how businesses can work together to achieve great results and the Canadian Potato Museum wants to issue a heart-felt thank you to all involved.”

Mr. MacKendrick noted the proceeds from the promotion will be used toward future projects at the non-profit museum, such as enhancing programming and growing the tourism and educational potential for the Western Prince Edward Island facility.

The promotion also featured a grand prize donated by Rodd Mill River Resort. There were over 3,000 entries for the chance to win two days at the resort, located in Mill River Provincial Park, 45 minutes from Summerside, PEI. The three-and-a-half star facility is one of the top 50 golf resorts in Canada. The prize winner was drawn after the presentation of the donation.

In the press release, Mr. MacKendrick noted the promotion was sponsored by the Prince Edward Island Potato Board, the PEI Bag Co. and Fresh Media.