Thanks to researchers at Washington State University sweet potatoes may soon pop up in fields across the Evergreen state. WSU’s Carol Miles, director of the Northwestern Washington Research and Extension Center, said sweet potatoes could benefit the livestock industry as well as Pacific Northwest sweet potato lovers.

"In the past, we've had pea vine hay as an example in the Skagit Valley. So when we go to harvest peas, we strip the pea pods off the plant and all that vine material goes to livestock feed. Could potentially do the same thing with sweet potatoes.”

Since sweet potato vines are edible, growers, Miles noted, could cut the vine matter at time of harvest for livestock feed. She added contrary to popular belief, sweet potatoes, which are typically grown in the southeastern U.S, do very well in Washington.

"There are sweet potatoes grown on the commercial scale in the irrigated Columbia basin area and I know that there's some interest in looking at a local sweet potato puree with a processor in that area.”

Miles added the health of consumers would also benefit from having access to a locally grown sweet potatoes, which are packed with nutrients and antioxidants like vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, potassium, and fiber.

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