Processing

Potato processing facilities shutting down in Western Europe; calls multiply for reduced planted area

In the European potato sector, the direct consequences of the Covid-19 crisis are stark and multiple, according to a report by FIWAP (Filiere wallonne de la pomme de terre), is the potato industry association of the potato growers in Wallonia, Belgium. several potato processing units are shutting down (totally or partially) in Western Europe, particularly those that supply fast-food restaurants and french fry outlets. Throughout the European northwest, calls for a reduction in the 2020 areas multiply.

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Cavendish Farms to contract potato growers on Prince Edward Island: ‘Sell to someone else, if you can’

CBC reports this morning that potato processor Cavendish Farms has advised the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) potato producers under contract to supply the company with spuds to “sell to other markets if they can,” as the company deals with a sharp drop in demand for its product in the wake of COVID-19-related restaurant closures. The company is currently in negotiations with Island potato growers through the P.E.I. Potato Board on a new contract.

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Smart new world: Your next potato chip may be flavored by artificial intelligence

For leading potato chip maker Frito-Lay, to be innovative at scale requires artificial intelligence. The company’s culinary experts and scientists make decisions informed by a custom-built AI engine that monitors social media, retail sales, restaurant trends, and news and search analysis, according to a report from journalist Katie Sehl and published by Fortune. Michael Lindsey, chief transformation and strategy officer for Frito-Lay North America presented on this at MIT Technology Review’s EmTech Digital conference.

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Lamb Weston: Retail sales of frozen french fries up ‘significantly’; production increased

Potato processor Lamb Weston said that grocery store sales of frozen french fries and processed potatoes “are up significantly” as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and the “stay-at-home” orders issued by a number of state governors across the U.S. Sean Connolly, president and CEO of Conagra foods — the former parent company of Lamb Weston — said that all of the company’s North American facilities “are open and running at high levels of utilization.”

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COVID-19 impact: The Dutch need to move a ‘mountain of potatoes’

Potato growers are facing huge losses now restaurants and snack bars have closed their doors and compensation plans have not yet materialised, the NRC reports. Now that the majority of restaurants, bars and fast food outlets worldwide have closed their doors to contain coronavirus, growers are looking at a stock of 1.5 million tons of potatoes, two thirds of which cannot be sold.

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How the potato chip got its healthy new snack status

Potato chips have come a long way since the first mass produced varieties in the early 20th? century. Since then, the product has taken on many different forms to cater to evolving consumer needs, writes Thiago Roriz, TNA Solution’s General Manager for Latin America, in an article published by BakeryandSnacks.com. But it’s not just new flavours; potato chips have been gaining ground on the health front too.

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The founder of Farm Frites International passed away

Piet de Bruijne earlier today announced that his father, Gerrit de Bruijne has passed away. Mr de Bruijne was the founder of Farm Frites International. He was born in 1933. The Board of Directors of Farm Frites International in the Netherlands issued a statement regarding funeral arrangements and ways in which you can pass on your condolences to the family.

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Frito-Lay accused of deceiving customers with labeling of artificially flavored potato chips

Legal Newsline reports that Frito-Lay North America Inc. is accused of misleading consumers by failing to disclose on the front label that its Ruffles cheddar and sour cream potato chips contain artificial flavoring, a class action lawsuit alleges. “Other brands of cheddar and sour cream ridged potato chips contain cheddar and sour cream seasoning with artificial flavor and identify their products as ‘Artificially Flavored’ on the front label,” the complaint says.

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US: Western Potatoes grows potato seed for Frito-Lay

If you’re in the Panhandle and open up a bag of Frito-Lay potato chips, chances are good the potatoes came from one of the Western Potatoes locations in Alliance, Kansas or Colorado, according to an article published by the Star-Herald. Western Potatoes grows chip potatoes and seed potatoes in Alliance, Lincoln, Kan., and Holyoke, Colorado. They grow seed only in Gordon. The employee-owned operation is one of the largest seed growers for Frito-Lay, and has been working with the company since the late 1970s.

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Belgian fries spared from national coronavirus lockdown

Belgium’s national dish, fried potato sticks that many English speakers refer to as “French fries,” has escaped the country’s near lockdown over coronavirus, with vendors allowed to stay open while all cafes and restaurants have been forced to close. The government ordered schools, bars, gyms and all sporting and cultural activities to close for three weeks from Saturday and curbed shop opening times to limit the spread of the disease.

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McDonald’s UK french fries (finally) to be British-only

It is reported in The Times that the next time you eat chips in McDonald’s in the UK, they will be entirely British. The fast-food chain has announced that, from now on, its UK arm will buy only British potatoes, in a move that will result in a further £9 million investment each year in the British sector. The decision[Read More…]

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Report: ‘UK savoury snacks industry is a real success story’

A new report by The Snack, Nut and Crisp Manufacturers Association (SNACMA), estimates the total value of the UK’s savoury snack industry for the coming year at £3.2 billion, a significant increase on last year’s figure of £2.5 billion.. With more than 95 per cent of all potato crisps being made from home grown potatoes, it is claimed that the snack sector is a major supporter of farming jobs.

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Key Technology promotes Quentin Kemph as Area Sales Manager for the South Central United States

Key Technology, a member of the Duravant family of operating companies, announces the promotion of Quentin Kemph as Area Sales Manager for the South Central United States. Kemph is responsible for bringing Key’s high performance digital sorting, conveying and other automation systems to customers that process potatoes, fruits, vegetables, nuts, snack foods, poultry and more. “During his lengthy tenure at[Read More…]

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PepsiCo New Zealand changes cooking oil, reducing amount of saturated fat in chips

PepsiCo New Zealand is committed to reducing the saturated fat, sodium and added sugars for Kiwi consumers, Potatoes NZ reports. Exciting news from the potato crisp industry recently, as PepsiCo NZ evolve healthier processing for NZ’s favourite snacks. The maker of Bluebird potato chips and other snacks, has changed the cooking oil for its major snack brands to canola oil.[Read More…]

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Aberdeen fry trials test processing potential of spud lines

It’s that time of year in Aberdeen when the pungent aroma of deep-fried french fries wafts through the hallways of the Marshall building on the campus of the University of Idaho’s Aberdeen Research & Extension Center, Bill Schaefer reports for Farm & Ranch.

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PepsiCo to buy online snacks retailer in China

PepsiCo Inc. plans to buy online snacks company Hangzhou Haomusi Food Co. — known as Be & Cheery — for $705 million from Haoxiangni Health Food Co. as the maker of Doritos and Lay’s potato chips expands in China.

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Stardom: Sales of Spanish potato chip company boom after appearance in ‘Parasite’ movie

87-year-old Cesar Bonilla, who owns the company Bonilla a La Vista, is grateful to ‘Parasite’ director Bong Joon-ho. Cesar Bonilla is still baffled by a surge in demand for the canned potato chips made by his company in northwestern Spain after they appeared in award-winning Korean film Parasite. The movie this month became the first non-English language film to win an[Read More…]

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French fries in China – big opportunities and high hurdles

The market for French fries in China is growing rapidly but barriers to entry exist for foreign providers, as Peter Peverelli of just-food.com explains. The potato, a staple of many European nations, has traditionally only had a supporting role in Chinese cuisine. It is known as tudou (literally: ‘earth bean’) in colloquial Chinese, or malingshu (‘horse bell tuber’) in formal[Read More…]

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher

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