New research confirms that French fried potatoes are not a source of trans fat

Two new studies published in Preventing Chronic Disease confirmed the dramatic reduction in the trans fat content of French fried potatoes, noticed the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association. More than any other segment of the food industry, the potato industry has made the greatest improvements in the fatty acid profile of its products, including French fried potatoes. Researchers at the Jean Mayer[Read More…]

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Canada: Potato tampering ‘crisis’ debated in Prince Edward Island legislature

Ongoing cases of Prince Edward Island potatoes being found with metal objects inserted into them became the focus of heated debate in the P.E.I. legislature. In the first question period since the May 4 election, Opposition Leader Steven Myers pressed government on why there was no mention of P.E.I.’s potato tampering cases in yesterday’s speech from the throne. Agriculture Minister Alan McIsaac[Read More…]

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EU food safety watchdog issues cancer warning on acrylamide

Experts from the European Food Safey Authority (EFSA) have confirmed previous conclusions that acrylamide, a chemical substance formed when heating foods like potato chips, barbecued meat, and bread, potentially increases the risk of developing cancer. EFSA’s Panel on Contaminants in the Food Chain (CONTAM) said it stood by a draft opinion, published in July last year, which concluded on an[Read More…]

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Power to the Pieper: Potato to conquer Dutch hearts

Van Gogh immortalized the tater (“pieper” in Dutch) in his painting The Potato Eaters, but statistics show that the Netherlands has fewer and fewer potato eaters. The Dutch Potato Organization (NAO) wanted to know why, and decided it was time for a recapturing campaign: “Power to the Pieper”. More

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Canada: More nails found in Russet potatoes

In another instance of food tampering, a couple in Halifax’s supper was spoiled over the weekend when a woman spotted a 2-inch nail embedded inside one of their potatoes. Ray Clarke says he couldn’t believe it. “It makes me shiver to think of anyone who would do the likes of this, and that could cause grave damage to anybody. If you sunk[Read More…]

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US: Minnesotans protesting potato pesticides turned away from McDonald’s meeting

A group of rural Minnesotans hoping to present their concerns about McDonald’s use of potato pesticides were denied entrance to the company’s shareholder meeting Thursday, they said. Kathy Connell, Larry Heitkamp and Amy Mondloch of the Toxic Taters Coalition said in a news release that they had worked with a McDonald’s shareholder to enter the meeting, but McDonald’s security turned them[Read More…]

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Fresh Solutions Network seizing opportunities for innovation

A major consumer study fielded by the United States Potato Board last fall determined that the number one barrier to consuming potatoes more often at home was that people craved more variety in their meals. And the USPB’s annual Attitudes & Usage study found that 22% of their target shoppers agreed that they would be motivated to purchase more fresh[Read More…]

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UK: The death of the potato crisp? Shoppers switch to ‘healthier’ nachos and biscuits

For decades, prawn cocktail, salt and vinegar and cheese and onion were staple flavours of the British lunchbox. But it appears that the potato crisp is in decline. A snack industry survey shows that alternative, non-fried savoury snacks including tortilla chips, and biscuits such as Mini Cheddars, are now selling outselling crisps in Britain. The UK crisp market is worth £923.2 million, down[Read More…]

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US: Conventional growers make organic switch with spuds

Offering organic potatoes is a winning move for some conventional grower-shippers. Idaho Falls, Idaho-based Potandon Produce LLC has put its own brand on a line of organic potatoes that hit the market in February. Red, russet and yellow potatoes are packed in 3-pound poly bags and distributed from sites in Ohio, Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Washington. Bancroft, Wis.-based RPE says its three organic[Read More…]

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Ireland: Young families to spend most on potatoes in next decade

The three-year campaign to generically promote potato consumption in Ireland will specifically target consumers in the 22 to 44 year old age category, according to Bord Bia Director of Horticulture Mike Neary. “These are the people who will be spending most on potatoes over the next decade,” he said. More

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UK: Dietitians criticise Health Star Rating system which ranks potato chips above fruit

A government-endorsed Health Star Rating System to aid shoppers’ food choices has been criticised as misleading and simplistic. Dietitians complain that some processed foods high in salt, fat, sugar, and in additives and preservatives, are receiving a higher star rating than healthier natural foods. The Herald Sun found several anomalies, including that Woolworths’ Select Straight Cut Potato chips got the[Read More…]

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India: Punjab’s solution to beat glut – Eat more potatoes

Over the next few weeks, people in Punjab and even neighbouring areas could well be on a potato diet. Forced by a glut of the potato crop, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has directed officers to increase the use of potatoes in the cooked meals supplied under various government programmes. Even as a majority of the farmers in Punjab are[Read More…]

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Scotland: Humble potato offers no easy fixes for farmers

Scottish seed potato exports are booming, with the latest figures indicating that 2014/15 has been a record breaking season. Scotland only grows 25 per cent of the total GB potato crop, but produces 75 per cent of GB seed and exports a total of 300,000 tonnes annually to more than 25 countries outside of the UK. While Scotland’s seed producers[Read More…]

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Ireland: Growers urged to cut potato acreage

Potato growers should reduce their potato planting areas to some degree in 2015, given the poor prices that have been available over the past two seasons, according to Teagasc’s Dr Denis Griffin. “Last year saw an oversupply of potatoes coming onto the market right across Europe, with prices falling accordingly,” he said. “We continue to see a decline in potato[Read More…]

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UK: Potato Council digs into past to boost sales of potatoes

Scots potato growers are being urged to take part in a special VE Day 70th anniversary campaign. The Potato Council plans to launch a campaign for VE Day celebrations urging people to eat more potatoes, just as the Ministry of Agriculture and Food did during the war. During the war the government launched a Dig for Victory campaign encouraging people[Read More…]

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23 Percent of UK parents think potato crisps are vegetables

Some people still struggle trying to differentiate a fruit from a vegetable. Case in point: a number still believe that tomato is a veggie. In the UK, at least 23% of the parents believe that potato crisps are still vegetables and that they may still be great for the body to take. But then again, study suggests such assumption is[Read More…]

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Potato is still favourite for Aussies

Research has confirmed what we already know: Aussies love a good potato. The average Australian eats potato about 14 times per month, according to the latest wave of the Potato Tracker project. Additionally, potatoes are also in the top five most purchased vegetables among respondents, and still regarded as good value for money. Report

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So Roundup ‘probably’ causes cancer. This means what, exactly?

You’ve already heard by now that the World Health Organization just classified glyphosate  –  the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup – as a probable carcinogen. Another probable carcinogen, acrylamide, is formed by cooking at high temperatures: It shows up, for instance, in coffee beans, potato chips, and french fries. The FDA just approved a GMO potato that produces less than half[Read More…]

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US Potato Board boosts salad bar program

The US Potato Board has approved a program that matches industry donations to buy up to 3,000 salad bars for school cafeterias during the next five years. USPB also plans to maintain contact with school district food service professionals – both at schools receiving new salad bars and those that had them previously – to suggest creative potato preparation ideas[Read More…]

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New research: Consumers willing to spend more for biotech potato products

New research from an Iowa State University economist found consumers were willing to spend more for genetically modified potato products with reduced levels of a chemical compound linked to cancer. Wallace Huffman, Charles F. Curtiss Distinguished Professor in Agriculture and Life Sciences who contributed to the project, said the findings underscore the importance of efforts to educate consumers on the use[Read More…]

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Transparency is key to future success of GM potatoes

Acccording to Peter VanderZaag, potato farmer and scientist from Ontario in Canada, growers in the US and Canada would be likely to grow Innate, Simplot’s new GM potato, but until consumer perceptions change, valuable new technologies that reduce waste and increase health benefits will remain underutilized, even though they are much needed in the developing world. He believes there is a significant gap between[Read More…]

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McDonalds seeking its fast-food soul

McDonald’s is having an identity crisis. Its core customers still line up at the drive-through window for cheap, quick cups of coffee and hash browns. But the company is also trying to appeal to more finicky eaters who have moved on to upstart competitors like Smashburger and Chipotle, which market their quality ingredients and food customization. Full story

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Editor & Publisher: Lukie Pieterse


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