Retail purchases of all potato products were 41 percent higher in March 2020 compared to the same time frame last year, according to figures released by industry marketing body, Potatoes USA.
“Consumers give potatoes high marks for being a satisfying food that everyone enjoys and for being a great value,” said Blair Richardson, CEO of Potatoes USA. “The surprising news for most people is that potatoes are a nutrient-dense vegetable.”
Fresh potatoes have experienced a 42 percent volume increase since the beginning of March and a 67 percent year-over-year dollar sales increase as of the end of the first week of April. Before shelter-at-home mandates, 73 percent of consumers across the country reported eating potatoes at least once a month.
Richardson notes that according to a study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, potatoes provide more nutrients per penny compared to most vegetables. Potatoes have the highest score per dollar (along with sweet potatoes and carrots) on eight essential nutrients including potassium, ?ber, protein, vitamins C and E, calcium, iron and magnesium.
Potatoes contain as many, if not more, vitamins and minerals compared to other vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower and sweet potato, per serving. One medium sized (5.3 ounces) skin-on potato contains 620 mg of potassium (more than a banana), 27 mg of vitamin C (more than a tomato), 2 grams fiber, and 3 grams of protein (which is half the protein in an egg). Potatoes provide all of these nutrients for 110 calories with no fat, sodium or gluten.
“Dehydrated potatoes are a great option right now because they don’t require refrigeration and can be a go-to in your pantry,” said Richardson. “Same goes for potato chips.”
Dehydrated potatoes are typically made from Russet, Red and Yellow potatoes that undergo a dehydration (removal of water). They can be easily rehydrated by adding water and then served or cooked immediately.
Potato chips are minimally processed and typically made with three ingredients found in most homes – potatoes, vegetable oil and salt. In comparison, several of the top snack foods contain five or more ingredients. Potato chips also primarily contain unsaturated fats (90 percent) – the type of fats that fit within a healthy dietary pattern.
For more recipes and information, please visit PotatoGoodness.com.
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Potatoes USA is the marketing organization for the 2,500 commercial potato growers operating in the United States. Potatoes USA was established in 1971 by a group of potato growers to promote the benefits of eating potatoes. Today, as the largest vegetable commodity board, Potatoes USA is proud to be recognized as an innovator in the produce industry. For more information on Potatoes USA’s mission to “Strengthen Demand for U.S. Potatoes” by creating positive change in the industry through innovative and inspiring approaches, please visit PotatoesUSA.com.