As the holiday season gets closer, demand for Wisconsin potatoes is stronger than last year. “We have a good supply of Wisconsin red and gold potatoes from this year’s crop along with an excellent supply of year-round of russet potatoes,” says Christine Lindner, marketing manager for Friesland, WI-based Alsum Farms & Produce.
Lindner told FreshPlaza’s Astrid Van Den Broek that the company continues to add potato acreage. “We are up by 175 acres over last year to a total of more than 2,700 acres planted this year. Our russet, red and gold potato supply is up since we grew more acres of potatoes than the previous year.”
While Alsum’s primary growing region is Wisconsin, it does market other Midwestern-grown potatoes from its partner farms. “Specific to the Midwest market, consumers seek out local and Wisconsin-grown potatoes are positioned to fill that demand,” she says.
Potatoes are one of the commodities that have seen strong demand throughout the pandemic. Lindner notes that potato volume at retail is trending well above levels seen a year ago thanks to not only pandemic effects, but a recent round of pandemic buying in the Midwest.
Looking ahead, Lindner says Alsum is preparing to pack holiday potato volume at 15 percent and higher over last year. Part of that increased volume could be attributed to holiday gatherings looking different this year. Holidays are typically families getting together in their homes and while gatherings might look smaller the holidays will drive potato sales at retail.
Other COVID-19 related buying trends will also continue. “Consumers will continue to cook at home and demand at retail by consumers seeking nutritional and local foods will continue to stay well above last year’s levels for the foreseeable future,” says Lindner, adding that the majority of potatoes moving through retail currently are five and 10 lb. bags.
Source: FreshPlaza. Read the full report here
Photo: Left to right – Larry Alsum with daughters, Heidi Randall Alsum and Wendy Dykstra Alsum, and grandchildren.
Video: Alsum Farms – Learn firsthand how we grow, nurture and harvest Wisconsin Potatoes. Also on YouTube here
Alsum Farms: http://www.alsum.com/