American Journal of Potato Research

, Volume 96, Issue 1, pp 33–47 | Cite as

The Effect of Harvest Timing on French Fry Textural Quality of Three Processing Potato Varieties: Russet Burbank, Alpine Russet, and Clearwater Russet

  • Addie WaxmanEmail author
  • Jeffrey Stark
  • Michael K. Thornton
  • Nora Olsen
  • Joseph Guenthner
  • Richard G. Novy


Harvesting potatoes at or near physiological maturity increases the likelihood of producing high quality tubers which contributes to producing high quality processed French fries with the desired sensory attributes. Processing with immature or overly mature potatoes may produce French fries with reduced palatability. This two year (2014 and 2015) study evaluated the effects of three different harvest dates; early, normal, and late, on quality attributes of French fries produced from three processing varieties, Russet Burbank, Clearwater Russet, and Alpine Russet over a nine month storage season at 8.3 °C. The seven quality attributes evaluated included crispness, exterior shell, mealiness, moistness, texture variation, texture defects, and internal appearance. Results of this study show that early harvest, relative to normal and late harvest, was more detrimental to producing high quality French fries with regard to texture, and most notably, crispness. During storage, French fries produced from early harvested potatoes declined in quality and were out of grade for crispness at five months after harvest in 2014 and were out of grade at harvest for the full storage season in 2015. Significant differences were noted among the three varieties with regard to texture quality. Alpine Russet declined in textural quality five months after harvest. Russet Burbank declined rapidly in textural quality over the course of the storage season. Clearwater Russet consistently maintained acceptable quality with the highest textural scores of all seven parameters for a full nine month storage season.


Textural quality Crispness Russet Burbank Alpine Russet Clearwater Russet French fries Harvest Timng 


Cosechar la papa en o cerca de la madurez fisiológica aumenta las probabilidades de producir tubérculos de alta calidad, que contribuyen a la producción de papas procesadas a la francesa de alta calidad con los atributos sensoriales deseados. El procesamiento de papas inmaduras o ya pasadas de madurez pudiera producir papas a la francesa con palatabilidad reducida. En el estudio en estos dos años (2014 y 2015) se evaluaron los efectos de tres diferentes fechas de cosecha; temprana, normal y tardía, sobre los atributos de calidad de papas a la francesa producidas de tres variedades de proceso, Russet Burbank, Clearwater Russet, y Alpine Russet, sobre una época de almacenamiento de nueve meses a 8.3 °C. Los siete atributos de calidad evaluados incluyeron lo crujiente, la capa exterior, lo harinoso, la humedad, la variación de textura, los defectos de textura y la apariencia interna. Los resultados de este estudio muestran que la cosecha temprana, en relación con la normal y la tardía, fue la de más detrimento en la producción de papas a la francesa de alta calidad en relación a la textura, y más notablemente, con lo crujiente. Durante el almacenamiento, las papas a la francesa producidas de papas de cosecha temprana declinaron en calidad y estuvieron fuera de la calificación para lo crujiente a los cinco meses después de la cosecha en 2014, y estuvieron fuera de la calificación a la cosecha por toda la temporada de almacén en el 2015. Se notaron diferencias significativas entre las tres variedades en relación a la calidad de la textura. Alpine Russet declinó en calidad de textura cinco meses después de la cosecha. Russet Burbank declinó rápidamente en calidad de textura a lo largo de la temporada de almacén. Clearwater Russet mantuvo consistentemente calidad aceptable con las calificaciones más altas de textura de los siete parámetros por la temporada completa de los nueve meses de almacenamiento.



This research was performed as part of the dissertation of Addie Waxman. We wish to thank 1,4GROUP for their financial support of this project. Specifically, we wish to thank John Forsythe for his educational program at 1,4GROUP, Dave Beuerman, Kelly Tesar, and Shane Von Krosigk for the chemical analysis of samples, Lee-Anne Tanaka for project management, and Bill Price and Oksana Morgan for statistical analysis and advice.


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Copyright information

© The Potato Association of America 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.1,4GroupMeridianUSA
  2. 2.Idaho Falls R&E CenterUniversity of IdahoIdaho FallsUSA
  3. 3.Parma Research and Extension CenterUniversity of IdahoParmaUSA
  4. 4.Kimberly Research and Extension CenterUniversity of IdahoKimberlyUSA
  5. 5.Emeritus Professor of Agricultural EconomicsUniversity of IdahoMoscowUSA
  6. 6.USDA-ARS, Small Grains and Potato Research Germplasm UnitAberdeenUSA

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