CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) -- Ted Higginbottom was happy to see a dish heavy on peanuts this week on the menu at an Asian chain restaurant, but he said the Mandarin Kung Pao didn't land there by chance.
The 60-year-old Texas peanut farmer said his industry has pushed hard to get peanuts onto menus at restaurants like Pei Wei - a national, 163-location chain owned by P.F. Chang's. Whether its peanuts, cranberries, oats or other products, producers have found that successfully marketing to national outlets can pay off with big sales.
"If not for organizations like the (National) Peanut Board, there would not be as many peanut farmers in the U.S.," Higginbottom said. "Some of them wouldn't be in business."