McDonald’s stores in Malaysia have been forced to deny customers large portions of chips due to a global shortage of frozen French fries. The lack of spuds means the fast-food giant is exploring ‘new distribution channels’ in a bid to return the popular item to their menu.
As we’ve seen over the past month, the global supply crisis and other factors have taken a huge toll on the supply of potatoes scheduled for the thousands of McDonald’s locations in Japan. Now even convenience stores are getting in on the action with Ministop announcing the Bucket Potato, which boasts three times the regular amount of their X Fried Potatoes for 641 yen.
German retail giant Kaufland has rolled out low-carbohydrate potatoes, said to have 30% less carbohydrates, under its ‘Linella’ label. The new potato SKU is available across Germany at all Kaufland outlets, the retailer added. The innovative potato was created in collaboration with Kaufland’s long-term partner, Europlant Plant Breeding.
In December, McDonald’s Japan announced that it would be suspending sales of all French fry orders except smalls due to a potato shortage. Now, rival Japanese fast food chain Freshness Burger announced it will be increasing the amount of French fires in its regular and large-size orders, as well as its combo meals, by 25 percent and without increasing the price.
Supply line troubles between Japan and North America rob fans of breakfast bliss. As Casey Baseel reports for SoraNews24, it was with great sadness that McDonald’s Japan suspended sales of medium and large-size orders of French fries in mid-December. Now comes more sad news, as McDonald’s is also suspending sales of hash browns in Japan.
As we approached the end of last year, fast food fans were hit by the news of a French fry shortage in Japan which has most notably affected the chain McDonald’s. For a week the restaurant limited sales to only small-size orders of fries, which are called “Mac Fry Potato” in Japan. At the time, the rationing was attributed to delays caused by the ongoing global supply chain crisis as well as large-scale flooding in British Columbia, Canada, where the potatoes are imported from.
Botaniline, an American food technology and innovation company, has created a healthier ground protein product line. By substituting a percentage of the meat with potato, Botaniline is able to achieve cleaner label processed meat products that are lower in sodium and saturated fat. The result is a reduction in sodium by up to 90% and a product that’s free of all allergens, gluten, MSG, TVP, and soy.
Fast food chain KFC has suffered a shortage of French fries at its outlets in Kenya following delays in delivery from its overseas suppliers, forcing it to offer customers alternative food items in place of French fries. The company at first said it does not source potatoes for fries from local suppliers due to ‘global quality standards’, but then said on Tuesday this might happen ‘in the near future’.
Uglies Kettle Chips announces a brand redesign with a new logo, website, and a package design ready to hit shelves this month. Uglies, a division of Dieffenbach’s Snacks, has been on a mission since 2017 to reduce waste, support farmers, and fight hunger by using imperfect potatoes to craft delicious kettle-cooked potato chips.
McDonald’s put medium and large servings of french fries back on its Japanese menu Friday after flying in much-needed supplies, ending a weeklong restriction caused by shortages that have stymied the nation’s food industry. While the restriction has been lifted for now, there is concern that McDonald’s could limit serving sizes once again, depending on inventory levels.
McDonald’s Japan will only serve small-sized fries for a week starting Friday, as a result of delays in potato shipments from Canada. “Due to flooding near the Port of Vancouver and the global supply chain crunch caused by the coronavirus pandemic, there are delays in the supply of potatoes,” the company announced on Tuesday. Potatoes used to make french fries are usually imported from North America, McDonald’s Japan said.
Potatoes USA has issued a comprehensive research report depicting the potato category’s penetration on menus across different segments, dayparts, cuisines, and much more. According to the report, potatoes have a presence on 82.9% of restaurant menus in the U.S., and fast-casual restaurants are projected to experience the most growth of potatoes, 5%, over the next four years.
Lay’s is getting into the specialty liquor game with a new potato vodka for the holiday season. The Pepsico-owned brand unveiled the limited-edition booze on Thursday, in an effort to deliver “new and innovative ways to bring joy and fun” to fans, according to Melissa Miranda, Frito-Lay North America’s senior director of marketing.
A new partnership could see Ireland back producing significant amounts of chips for chip shops and distributors throughout the country. As Tamara Fitzpatrick reports for the Independent, O’Shea Farms from Piltown, Co Kilkenny have joined forces with Meadowfresh Foods in Tallow, Co Waterford to market and supply fresh Irish chipping potatoes.
McCain Foods and Strong Roots announced a strategic partnership this week, with McCain Foods investing $55 million USD in Strong Roots to take a minority stake in the business. The partnership enables Strong Roots and McCain Foods to continue meeting the rising consumer demand for healthy and natural food globally.
“We were searching for a quicker-cooking potato variety to make crispy, golden roasties that taste deliciously buttery, and this is what we found,” according to Lincolnshire-based potato growing business Branston. Branston says this new variety has been developed through careful crossing between Inca Bella and the popular, red-skinned Salad variety Franceline.
According to a news report by Reuters, fewer shops in Britain have shortages of potato crisps this week than the week before, official figures showed on Thursday, in a sign that supply problems for the popular snack food are easing. Britain’s biggest crisp producer Walkers had to scale back production at the start of the month after problems with an IT systems upgrade, which it warned could take weeks to fix.
British shoppers may face shortages of some of their favourite crisps until the end of the month after a botched computer upgrade disrupted the world’s biggest crisp factory, according to a news report by The Guardian. “A recent IT system upgrade has disrupted the supply of some of our products. Our sites are still making crisps and snacks but at a reduced scale,” a Walkers spokesperson said.
As Erica Yokoyama reports for Bloomberg News, Japanese snack company Calbee Inc. will raise the price of some of its potato chip products by between 7% and 10%, citing a decreased potato harvest in the northern agriculture-heavy island of Hokkaido due to hot weather and low rainfall.
Wada Farms, one of America’s largest grower-shippers-marketers of fresh potatoes, onions and sweet potatoes for retail buyers and the food distribution industries and The Produce Moms, a leading digital influencer of all things fruits and vegetables, have moved their long-time partnership onto the retail shelf with a new co-branded potato package.
Britons already eat potatoes boiled, baked, roasted and mashed but now the humble spud is being milked for all its worth, with potato milk set to be the next big thing, according to a report by The Guardian. Alice Shrubsall, alternative milk buyer at Waitrose, said the retailer was planning to expand its alt-milk range to include potato milk.
Hormel Foods Corporation recently announced its venturing company, 199 Ventures, has entered into an exclusive partnership with The Better Meat Co. to bring new mycoprotein and plant-based protein products to the marketplace. Its product Rhiza is produced via a potato-based fermentation pioneered by The Better Meat Co.
Several key UK retailers have pledged to sell disease resistant organic potatoes, boosting sustainability and farm resilience for producers. Organic certification body the Soil Association developed its ‘UK Robust Potato Pledge 2021’ in a bid to help growers move away from potatoes that are susceptible to blight. Signees to the pledge have agreed to favour organic spuds that have been bred to be blight resistant.
Lamb Weston Holdings, Inc.’s top and bottom lines headed in different directions during the first quarter of fiscal 2022. Sales rose 13% as foodservice and institutional businesses recovered around the world, but the company’s net income fell 67% for the quarter. “In the US, we continue to be encouraged by the pace of recovery in restaurant traffic and demand for fries,” Thomas P. Werner, president and chief executive officer said.
The marketing year that ended in June 2021 was unlike any year the potato industry has ever experienced, says Potatoes USA in a news release issued today. “With pandemic restrictions ebbing and flowing from June 2020 to July 2021, sales at foodservice fluctuated while retail purchases remained extremely strong throughout the year,” the industry body says.
Side Delights shared industry data showing that retail sales of fresh potatoes alone totaled $3.1 billion for the past year (July 2020-June 2021). “While many shoppers are returning to their busy schedules, many are leaning into the convenience of quick-to-cook products like our Side Delights® Steamables and Bakeables so they can prepare meals easily and cost-effectively in the comfort of their own home,” noted Kathleen Triou, President and CEO of Fresh Solutions Network.
The Irish Farmers Association (IFA) reports that retail and consumer demand have improved in the country this week as colder weather has returned and families are back into routines, following the holiday period. The hospitability sector continues to prosper despite the return of schools. European markets continue to regain confidence as economies are almost fully re-opened at this point.
Tasteful Selections recently announced the limited launch of its new 100-percent plastic-free, recyclable and compostable packaging in the US. “This new paper packaging with PaperLock™ technology is a major step forward in sustainable packaging. It offers light protection and natural absorption characteristics that protect our potatoes and help keep plastic out of the waste stream,” said Tim Huffcutt, vice-president, sales and marketing operations.