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Pelletier Farms takes top spot for field direct delivery

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — A Mapleton farm took top honors when McCain Foods recognized its Top 10 Potato Growers Aug. 24.

The company announced D.C. Farms of Mapleton as this year’s champion potato grower during the annual McCain grower barbecue, held at the Presque Isle Inn and Convention Center. Almost 300 guests gathered to celebrate the top growers and their achievements.

D.C. Farms is a family operation led by Darrell Chandler and sons, Darren and David. Darren Chandler said he was surprised to receive the award, and credited the farm’s success to the hard work and dedication of the family and the farm crew.

McCain bases champion grower selection on the highest standing quality of three delivery categories: field direct delivery, winter storage delivery and refrigerated storage. To attain the position of champion grower, D.C. Farms placed first in field direct category as well as first in the grower storage category. This is the second time the farm has received a champion grower award, with the last one being awarded 20 years ago.

The remainder of the 2017 top 10 growers included first-, second- and third-place winners in each storage category.

In the category of field direct delivery, Pelletier Farms of St. David (Adrian and Ken Pelletier) claimed the top spot. Grass Farms of Mars Hill (Duane and Kevin Grass) earned second place and third place went to Dana Morrell and son, Bud, of Caribou.

In winter storage delivery, Steve Bubar of Fort Fairfield won first place. Second place went to Triple G Sales of Limestone (John, John Jr., Matt, and Steve Griffeth).  Gaylen and Brent Flewelling of Easton took third place.

Guerrette Farms Corp. of Caribou (Ryan, Brian, and Andy) took first place in the refrigerated storage category, with Kingsbury Family Farm of Bridgewater (Shane, Keith, and Logan) in second place and Fitzpatrick Farms of Houlton (Donald, Toby and Jimmy) in third place.

Allison McCain, chairman of McCain Foods Limited, extended personal congratulations to the Chandler family and all of the McCain growers. In his address to the group, McCain said the U.S. and world markets are back in a growth trend, which is good news. He called this an exciting time for agriculture, as the industry has never seen more innovation in farming practices than in the last few years.

Other McCain management on hand to congratulate the growers included Christine Wentworth, vice president of agriculture/North America; David Good, director of agriculture; Germain Pinette, director of manufacturing/East; Dave McKenney, Easton plant manager; and Bart Bradbury, field department manager. Walter Whitcomb, Maine commissioner of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, was also a special guest.

CHAMPION GROWER — McCain Foods has named D.C. Farms of Mapleton the 2017 champion grower. At the annual growers barbecue in Presque Isle are, from left, front row: representing D.C. Farms, Terri Chandler, Darren Chandler, Marilyn Chandler and Darrell Chandler. Middle row, McCain Easton Plant Manager Dave McKenney, VP of Agriculture North America Christine Wentworth, Chairman of McCain Foods Limited Allison McCain, Director of Manufacturing NA East Germain Pinette and Director of Agriculture NA David Good. Back row, Field Department Manager Bart Bradbury, Field Department Scheduler Barry Wolverton, Field Department Storage Manager Brent Bradley, Field Department Field Representative Jim Clark, Field Department Senior Field Rep Brianne O’Leary and Field Department Agronomist Sam Delano. (Courtesy of McCain Foods)

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