MSU growing, selling purple potatoes for chips

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EAST LANSING, MI. (WILX) -- "In our breeding efforts we were able to come across some unique potatoes that have actually strong deep purple pigmentations."

MSU's Agronomy Farm has spent 20 years developing purple potatoes. Now, they're being made right here in Michigan.

David Douches, part of the Potato Breeding Team at Michigan State, says that coloring is thanks to anthocyanin, an antioxidant found in blueberries, grapes and red wine.

"So it's probably healthier for you,” said Douches. “We're just playing off of the dark blue dark purple color to call them blackberry.”

Despite the fruity vibes, though, there’s no sweet…just a bit salty.

"If you were to close your eyes they would taste just like regular potato chips," said Douches.

He says the ‘taters took more than 20 years to develop.

Now they’re being grown and turned into delicious kettle cooked chips just a little ways north in Traverse City.

"We produced some seed that went to the commercial growers who then produced the potatoes for Great Lakes and now they're coming out with their first run," said Douches. "But it's still limited because there's not a lot of potatoes being grown."

Those blackberry potato chips are now available to buy through the Great Lakes Potato Chip Company online or in stores.