They’re too big, too small, or too sweet. They have blemishes. But these are just beauty marks to Dieffenbach’s Potato Chips of Pennsylvania, which searches for potatoes that don’t pass muster or meet chip manufacturers’ standards. Instead of becoming food waste, the orphaned potatoes are transformed into UGLIES, a line of small-batch, kettle-cooked chips that are as delicious as any on store shelves. “We’re taking them the way nature produced them,” says Dwight Zimmerman, the company’s sales and marketing VP. “They’re perfect in our eyes. They have character and flavor.” The chips’ size may vary from bag to bag; some may have brown spots or edges, others have a darker tone. Still crave-worthy, they come in four choices — Original Sea Salt, Salt & Vinegar, Barbecue, and Jalapeno ($3 to $3.50 for 6 ounces). The company says it has saved more than 1.5 million pounds of potatoes in the last two years. “Always Ugly, Always Delicious” is its slogan, along with “It’s Good to Be Ugly.” Potato beauty is more than skin deep. Available at Donelan’s Supermarkets, Big Y, and Roche Bros. locations, or go to www.dieffenbachs.com.
ANN TRIEGER KURLAND