Riwaka kids embrace potato challenge

Last updated 13:00 05/12/2013

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A trans-Tasman potato war is on, being fought on battlefronts in Nelson and Townsville.

It's been sparked by jam-making former Nelsonian Owen Pope who has shifted allegiances after shifting across the ditch.

"We have laid down the challenge and our North Queensland Farmers Market customers here in Townsville are collecting their buckets and potatoes. We plan to knock your Kiwi socks off and show you how to grow potatoes," he said.

The Nelson Farmers Market isn't about to back down and at the Morrison Square market yesterday enlisted visiting troops from Riwaka School.

The battle requires growing a potato in a bucket which will be collected after three months and weighed to find a winner.

Yesterday, each child was given a bucket, a potato, and instructions so they could grow their own.

Eight-year-old Flin Bryant said he was looking forward to growing his very own potatoes and he wanted to win.

Roasted potatoes were his favourite form of potato dish, he said.

Market co-ordinator Amme Hiser was delighted at the children's interest in learning about growing their own food.

"I love this. I think it is so great to get kids growing their own produce and see that it is just so easy.

"People do not realise that they do not have to buy everything at the supermarket," she said.

It was also nice to have a little rivalry but for a great cause, and the competition was just a bit of fun, she said.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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