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Several food processors have indicated interest in using North Carolina sweet potatoes for value added products such as sweet potato fries. That development, in turn, may lead to the location of sweet potato processing facilities in North Carolina. The purpose of this Golden LEAF grant is to provide research responsive to industry needs to develop sweet potato varieties with less product darkening that can be processed over the entire calendar year; to optimize storage conditions for processing needs, and to provide processing help to manage the unique cutting and aging characteristics of sweet potatoes. The grant will also support cultural efforts to provide improved efficiencies, including dedicated planting for processing, mechanical planting and harvesting methods to reduce production costs, improved pest management methods, etc.