Consumers

Australia’s potato peril: Industry highlights concern about EU fries dumping threat

The potato industry in Australia is now in a state of ‘high alert’ for any potential French fries dumping activity from the EU, highlighting its chief concerns as price plummeting and farmer welfare after a tough season. The alert was raised after the European Union (EU) recently passed an EUR650mn (US$741.1/A$1.1.mn) COVID-19 government assistance scheme that would enable EU firms to export their processed potatoes cheaply Down Under, where before it had never been a common avenue.

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Supply shortage, rise in demand push potato prices in India up by 40% in major cities

In the major metros of Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai, potatoes are selling for Rs 30-45 per kg, depending on the variety and quality. In Mumbai, a kg of potato is priced at Rs 35-45, while in Delhi and Kolkata prices are hovering between Rs 30-40 per kg. Potato traders from Uttar Pradesh, the largest producer of potatoes in India, said prices are unlikely to come down until November, when the new crop starts coming in.

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Signs of some recovery in global restaurant fry demand

Major potato processor Lamb Weston and global quick service restaurant chain McDonald’s saw sales fall significantly in the three months to the end of June, but it could have been much worse. There are also some signs of a recovery in restaurant fry sales, although fears over coronavirus remain, according to Cedric Porter, editor of weekly market briefing World Potato Markets. Lamb Weston’s sales were 16% lower in the quarter than the same period last year, with demand from foodservice distributors and smaller restaurant the most affected.

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‘Stop cutting out white potatoes – they’re as healthy as sweet ones’, dietitians say

When trying to improve one’s diet, many people think they need to cut out potatoes. White potatoes, some of us have been led to believe, are fattening carb-bombs that should be shunned at all costs, especially if you’re trying to lose weight. Well, not quite. Not at all, in fact. Three dietitians explained to Insider how the nutritional profiles of sweet and white potatoes are very similar, and they’re calling for people to stop demonizing the latter.

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Retail potato sales soar in the US

Potatoes USA reports that retail potato sales are soaring, increasing 31% in dollar sales and 32% in volume sales between March 16, 2020 and June 14, 2020, according to IRI. All potato categories across the retail store, except deli-prepared sides, increased in dollar and volume sales, Potatoes USA says in a press release. The majority of potato categories saw double-digit growth in both dollar sales and volume sales. Dehydrated potatoes had the largest increase in dollar and volume sales. Dollar sales increased by 59%, and volume sales increased by 49%.

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Potatoes: The popular ingredient that Taco Bell is pulling from its menu

In a July 2020 post to Reddit, a Taco Bell employee leaked information about some serious menu changes that would allegedly begin in August, 2020, and people were not pleased, reports Heather Clark for mashed.com. They were especially upset to read that “all potato items” would be disappearing from the menu. Taco Bell’s potato enthusiasts even created a Change.org petition titled “Save Taco Bell Potatoes” with over 9,000 signatures as of this writing.

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Potatoes USA pulls back the curtain on consumer buying behaviors

Potatoes remain a leading category staple at retail. As growers keep pace with increasing demand, Potatoes USA continues to bring value for both growers and retailers. Lilian Diep, writer for AndNowUknow got in touch with the organization to learn more about the initiatives and studies that will take place this upcoming fiscal year. “We’re working on a couple of things over this next year. Right now, all of our retail growers are moving at full capacity to bring products into stores,” Kayla Dome, Marketing Manager, said.

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Trending: Potatoes and a strong immune system

Maintaining a strong immune system and living a healthy lifestyle has been trending since before the shelter-in-place began. A March 10 Seattle Times article, Can you Boost your Immunity with Food?, suggests consumers choose immune-supporting nutrients such as Vitamin C and a plant-based diet. Potatoes are high in Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and Folate and can help restore electrolyte balance because they have a high level of potassium in addition to sodium – two important electrolytes.

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KFC works to win American ‘potato wedgers’ over to the fry side

KFC is reportedly working hard to win the love of fans of its former potato wedges over to its newly launched Secret Recipe fries. As QSRweb recently reported, more than a few folks on social media expressed their objections to the brand’s fry refresh, professing true love only to the longtime potato wedges that have been removed from the QSR’s menu. Now, the brand is hoping its National Fry Day promotion of the new Secret Recipe fries on Monday, July 13, will win those wedge-woed hearts over to the new, more slender slivers, according.

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McCain’s ‘French Fries Feed Farmers’ campaign encourages Canadians to eat more fries

At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, McCain Foods stepped in to help potato growers by releasing a video encouraging Canadians to eat more french fries, titled ‘French Fries Feed Farmers’. Despite the Canadian government’s relief programs, McCain Foods stated in a release that “the private sector has an important role to play.” The company put several initiatives in place “to show its deep-rooted commitment” to its 130 potato growers across Canada. The campaign is a 38-second video designed for social media highlighting one main message: Eat more fries, Canadians!

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Aldi and Puffin Produce launch new potato line

Puffin Produce has announced a partnership with Aldi to stock its exclusive range of local Pembrokeshire Early potatoes in stores across Wales. The Haverfordwest business worked with Aldi to roll out a new line of the potato variety as part of the supermarket’s award-winning Specially Selected range from June. Puffin Produce expects to supply around 200,000 packs of the new range to Aldi’s Welsh stores over the next two months.

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Fairfields Farm launches new season baby potatoes, activates online buying option

The warmer weather can mean only one thing, the chance to enjoy the tastiest early British new potatoes directly from Fairfields Farm, the company says in a press release issued today. Full of flavours and delicious for the summer months, Fairfields Farm says it is now offering its freshly-harvested baby potatoes online and giving customers 10% off everything throughout July – with free delivery nationwide in Britain straight from the farm to customers’ doors.

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In defense of potatoes

In the world of nutrition, potatoes seem to have fallen from grace. Meanwhile, sweet potatoes still — largely — get away scot-free. What is this travesty? Angela Dowden, British award-winning health journalist and Registered Nutritionist examines the evidence in this article published by the American Council on Science and Health.

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Video: Shifts in the US foodservice industry, and how chefs find inspiration from potatoes

In this episode of Potatoes USA’s “Keeping it Current” initiative, Kendra Keenan, Global Marketing Manager for Foodservice, talks about the shifts in foodservice and how chefs and operators from across the globe are finding potato inspiration for their menus and getting more creative to drive sales. Kendra also touches on the numerous marketing materials created for foodservice operators and where they can be accessed.

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Analysis: Changing consumer trends in Britain

Farmers and the wider food supply chain are used to responding to changing consumer requirements. However, it is hard to recall a time when the consumer landscape changed quite as dramatically as over these last three months of lockdown. AHDB has been following these changes closely, so whether considering shopping behaviour or the rise of in-home eating, AHDB has been reporting on the key issues which affect the demand for sectors’ products. Within this article, David Swales, AHDB Head of Strategic Insight, summarises some of the key factors which shape consumer demand.

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US potato industry focuses on re-establishing, growing America’s love of potatoes

The National Potato Council held their first ever virtual event this week. There’s been remarkable changes in the food system over the last few months because of COVID-19. That’s led to a lot of adjustments to the potato industry. “The versatility, the commonality and the nutritional benefits of the potato solidified our position with consumers—many of whom cooked their first potatoes at home over the past 90 days,” said Blair Richardson, CEO of Potatoes USA. Despite the hardships that COVID has presented, Richardson is still bullish for the potato industry.

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Potato consumption rebound in Canada put squeeze on reduced acreage

Potato acres across Canada are expected to be down for 2020, due to contract volume cuts in March as the pandemic lockdown hit North America, writes Shel Zolkewich in an article published by Spudsmart magazine. Kevin MacIsaac, general manager of the United Potato Growers of Canada, told Zolkewich in a phone interview. “We thought we would have far too many potatoes in the market – and now, the opposite is happening in many areas.”

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McCain brings ‘Potato Smiles’ back to Australia – as ‘Emotibites’

Shoppers are racing to get their hands on McCain’s classic Potato Smiles after the nostalgic snack disappeared from Australian supermarket shelves five years ago. Thousands of Australians have been rallying for years to bring back the iconic childhood treat after it was discontinued in 2015. ‘For many Australians, these are something they’ve looked back on fondly as part of their childhood. After years of build-up, it’s heartening to know that they’re meeting expectations,’ McCain Foods marketing manager ANZ Karen Ramsay said.

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COVID-19 cases detected at Frito-Lay factory in Beijing: Customers upset

Haunted by the confirmed COVID-19 cases at PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay factory in Beijing over the weekend, customers have been left in limbo as to whether they can still purchase their beloved potato chips, according to a news report by CGTN. Feng Zijian, deputy director of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said there’s no evidence showing PepsiCo’s potato chips have been contaminated with the coronavirus. PepsiCo said all staff at its food factory in Beijing’s Daxing District are home isolating after eight COVID-19 infections were reported at the factory on Saturday.

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‘How the potato came to India and conquered our lives’

From foreign food to a pantry staple, the potato’s journey to India traverses thousands of kilometres and three centuries of culinary assimilation, writes Diya Kohli in this piece published by Conde Nast Traveller. And in times of inflation, it is an upswing in potato prices that throw budgets off for all Indians, from a regular middle-class home to a street food vendor and an upscale restaurant. In the early days of lockdown, people in India stocked up in bulk. Primary among their list of pandemic staples—rice, dal and potatoes.

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Viewpoint: 70% of consumers say ‘natural’ food is healthier, but there’s no science behind the marketing hype

When you hear the word “natural,” what thoughts or images come to mind? If you think of flowers, puppies, fresh baked bread, or other wholesome ideas, you’re not alone, writes Jack Bobo on the Gernetic Literacy Project. Products that were once only found in “health food stores” or specialty stores like Sprouts Farmers Market, Whole Foods, or Natural Grocers are now available in traditional grocery and convenience stores.

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How COVID-19 has increased mindful consumerism

In a matter of weeks, COVID-19 upturned lives and livelihoods in Australia, New Zealand and around the world. One of the responses we’ve seen as people have adjusted and then readjusted to a new normal is a change in consumer behaviours.

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Potato sales at retail soar in the US

Retail potato sales soar, increasing 10.4% in dollar sales and 9.3% in volume sales between July 1, 2019 and May 19, 2020, according to IRI. All potato categories across the retail store, except deli-prepared sides, increased in dollar and volume sales, according to a report by Potatoes USA. Fresh, frozen, dehydrated, and canned potatoes saw double-digit increases in both dollar[Read More…]

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Eagle Eye Produce: Potato market insights, investments, and more

Jordan Okumura of AndNowUKnow reports that “the awesome potato has been a hotter category than usual as of late, with demand spiking through the spring months. As we get our foothold in June, the potato market is finding some stability for Eagle Eye Produce, though the consumer’s passion for the produce item is staying strong.”

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor/Publisher of Potato News Today


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