Won on a Peel

October 21, 1992 1 min read

It should come as no surprise to school-cafeteria workers everywhere that the world-champion potato peelers come from among their ranks.

Five school-kitchen workers from the Shelley, Idaho, district peeled their way into the Guinness Book of World Records this fall during the city’s 64th annual Idaho Potato Harvest Festival. Marj Killian and her teammates--Janene Utkin, Terry Anderson, Marilyn Small, and Barbara Pearson--peeled approximately 1,064 pounds of potatoes in 45 minutes.

The team had to end up with more than 830 pounds, 11 ounces of skinless potatoes to break the previous world’s record, set by a team from Emmeloord, the Netherlands, at a potato festival there.

Shelley’s potato peelers have been trying to break the record for several years. They thought they had done it at last year’s festival, only to discover later that the Dutch team had surpassed its own record.

Guinness Book officials issued the guidelines for the contest, but were not on hand to witness it.

Under the rules, the potatoes had to be peeled by five people in 45 minutes using only a standard kitchen knife. To qualify, only 51 percent of the potato skin had to come off.--U.G.

A version of this article appeared in the October 21, 1992 edition of Education Week as Won on a Peel