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Retail consumers in the U.S. spent more on potatoes

Potatoes USA says in its latest monthly newsletter that potato retail sales increased in dollar sales but decreased in volume sales from July 2021 – June 2022, compared to the same timeframe a year ago. As consumer prices increased by 10.5%, retail dollar sales increased by 5.7%. The total volume sales decreased 4.4% from the same time a year ago, but they remained above volume sales prior to the pandemic. Dollar sales have continuously increased over the last five years. Volume sales have ranged between 6.7 to 7 billion pounds of potatoes sold at retail.

Source: IRI Unify Retail Sales from July 1, 2017 – June 30, 2022

All retail potato categories increased in dollar sales and declined in volume sales. Although, all categories, except for deli-prepared sides, have a higher volume than before the pandemic.

Source: IRI Unify Retail Sales from July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022

Frozen potato sales account for 15% of potato sales and 18% of potato volume across the store. Frozen potatoes increased 2.8% in dollars and decreased 4.3% in volume. Straight-cut frozen fries make up the largest volume share of the frozen potato category, as seen in the chart below.

Source: IRI Unify Retail Sales from July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022

Fresh potato sales increased by 3% in dollars but fell by 5.6% in volume. The price per pound for fresh potatoes increased by 9.1%, but the average cost is still under $1. Most fresh potato types increased in dollar sales but declined in volume sales, except for one type: yellow potatoes. Yellow potatoes increased by 12% in dollars and by 4.6% in volume sales. However, russet potatoes remain the top volume share among all fresh potato types at 59%. Fresh potato sales account for 23% of retail store sales and 28% of volume sold.

Source: IRI Unify Retail Sales from July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022

When looking at fresh package types, micro/steamer and tray potatoes are the only two categories that increased in dollar and volume sales. Micro/steamer potatoes increased by 4.5% in dollars and by 2.6% in volume, while tray potatoes increased by 8.4% in dollars and by 1% in volume sales.

The only category to increase in dollar and volume sales for pack sizes was one to under two pounds, which grew by 9.2% in dollars and 2.4% in volume. All pack sizes eight pounds or greater saw the most significant volume sales decline but also had the largest price increases.

Source: Potatoes USA
Photo: Credit Potatoes USA

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