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May 30, 2006
For immediate release

New Prince Edward Island Food Product Gets a Taste Test at Bluefield High School Today


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A newly developed Prince Edward Island-based food product was available for taste testing at Bluefield High School today, thanks to a partnership formed by Holland College’s Culinary Institute of Canada, AgraWest Investments and the Food Technology Centre. Together, the partnership is developing a premium value-added mashed potato mix that will go to the market in the next few weeks.

AgraWest operates a high-volume, single-line, dehydrate potato granule processing facility in PEI. The new mashed potato mix is made from potato granules – each granule is a dehydrated single potato cell produced from the solid portion of whole potatoes with seasoned ingredients added. With the expertise from chefs at the Culinary Institute of Canada, recipes have been created to add zesty flavours to the product for a variety of choices including: Regular Mash, Extra Creamy, Buttermilk and Chives, Three Cheese, Roasted Garlic and Portobello Mushroom.

“The food industry plays a major role in our local economy and it is our hope to see this product available soon in local institutions, schools, and store shelves – and eventually to outside markets,” said Development and Technology Minister Mike Currie. “By supporting products that are made in PEI, we are supporting the growth of the PEI economy. Finding new products to introduce in today’s advancing food market, locally and internationally, is the key to remaining a leading competitor in the increasingly competitive food business.”

“AgraWest is very pleased with the relationship that has been formed between ourselves, the Culinary Institute of Canada and the Food Technology Centre,” said Plant Manager Jamie Trainor from AgraWest. “This partnership has granted us a great opportunity to develop a premium food product that can be sold locally as well as to export markets nationally and internationally. I was impressed with the resources, creativity and expertise available here in Prince Edward Island to develop a product of this calibre.”

In 2004, the PEI Food Technology Centre (FTC), the Culinary Institute of Canada (CIC) and Prince Edward Island Business Development launched a new product development partnership that would work together to develop specialty food products using Prince Edward Island ingredients. Through this agreement, the new mashed potato mix, a value-added PEI food product, has been developed to go to market.

The FTC lent its expertise with respect to the food science with analytical and nutritional testing as well as laboratory analysis on the products.

“The Culinary Institute of Canada is proud of the work we have been able to produce for AgraWest,” said Dave Harding, Culinary Programs Manager. “We are also pleased that our unique recipes, driven by research and development, will be a marketable product for AgraWest. This is a shining example of the creativity and expertise the CIC is able to offer to the food industry in this province.”

PEI Business Development Inc. works with businesses in Prince Edward Island to strengthen and expand our provincial economy though business development. Adding value and generating wealth, PEI Business Development offers a diverse range of programs and services to Island-based businesses.

For more information about the mashed potato mix, please contact: Jamie Trainor at AgraWest Investments at

Media Contact: Julie Whitlock