Retail

Idaho potato shortage rumor cleared

Consumers are worried about the possibility of not having enough French fries, after this year’s potato shortage. Between Oct. 9 and 11, a cold spell impacted 15 percent of the potato crop in Idaho, but 85 percent was already harvested, according to Frank Muir, the Idaho Potato Commission President and CEO. That was 13 billion pounds of potatoes, down from[Read More…]

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Wada Farms organic programs continue to grow

With demand for organically-grown produce continuing to increase, Wada Farm Marketing Group LLC in Idaho Falls, ID, made a commitment several years ago to greatly expand its organic offerings across all of its product lines. That effort is ongoing, as the company continues not only to increase its volume of organic products but also to extend availability, with a goal[Read More…]

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Chip makers’ experimentation with flavor pays off

Chip purchases are nearly universal with 94% of respondents to a 2019 Mintel survey saying they bought some kind of chips in the past year. Consumers gravitate to familiar brands and tastes and perceive chips as an indulgence, which may be a challenge to market expansion, but opportunities lie in new flavor combinations, functionality and healthy innovations. “Taste, craveability and[Read More…]

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US: Varietals, organics continue to spice up potato business

A potato isn’t just a potato, particularly now, with new varieties and organics coming on, marketers say. “Everyone is looking for category growth, and that is coming from specialty and organic offerings,” said Scott Leimkuhler, vice president with Los Angeles-based Progressive Produce LLC in Walla Walla, Wash. Large size packs on russets (10s and 15s) are decreasing in popularity, as consumers are[Read More…]

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Michigan State researchers developed dark purple potatoes. Now, they're becoming potato chips

It took 20 years, but Michigan State University researchers reached their goal — breeding a purple potato. And now they’re being made into purple, kettle-cooked potato chips. Dave Douches, director for the MSU Potato Breeding and Genetics program, and other researchers spent the last two decades crossing potato varieties and testing until they developed the purple spud species they were hoping[Read More…]

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North America: Processed potato needs influence fresh market

The chip, frozen and other potato-processing businesses continue to touch the fresh industry, but that touch might be a bit stronger this year, marketers say. “We have all heard of the news in the U.S.,” said Ross Johnson, international marketing director with the Eagle-based Idaho Potato Commission.  He noted the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently reported that, overall, the U.S.[Read More…]

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Brace yourself: A french fry shortage may soon sweep the US

Chilly temperatures and wet weather have given potato farmers across the United States and Canada a serious setback. Many farmers have been unable to harvest large portions of the potato crops they were counting on to round out the year. As Bloomberg reports, some of the highest potato-producing regions of North America are seeing significant setbacks. Now, as the companies that use[Read More…]

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Potatoes – a healthy powerhouse for every day

THE humble potato sure does get a bad rep these days, says WA Potatoes clinical nutritionist Carmen Hudson. People have started to fear the potato either because they think they’re high in calories or they are afraid of excessive carbohydrates. But it may come as a surprise to you that the potato has an extensive nutritional profile that shouldn’t be[Read More…]

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The average American spends nearly $30K on snacks in their lifetime

What would you do for a lifetime supply of snacks? According to new research, a sixth of Americans would completely shave their head. The survey of 2,000 Americans found snacks aren’t the only thing to drive respondents to extremes — the same number (16 percent) would also shave their head for a lifetime supply of chocolate. Respondents are truly willing[Read More…]

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Expert discusses reported potato shortage in the US

Have you seen the headline claiming there is a french fry shortage across the nation? They said it’s due to cold weather that shortened the harvest season. However, Western Mass News wanted to know if that’s true and how it will impact prices. “Something you grow out in nature, Mother Nature has a lot to do with it,” said Karen[Read More…]

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US potato imports down on the whole, despite gains in several categories

Overall, U.S. potato imports declined slightly during the first quarter (July – September) of the July 2019 – June 2020 marketing year compared to the previous year, dipping 12% in volume and 2% in value. The drop-off in fresh imports over this period—from 77,496 to 50,343 metric tons (MT), a 35% decrease—largely drove the downward trend, overshadowing growth in the[Read More…]

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Potato and onion sales run hot during the holidays in the US

Winter may be dawning during the Thanksgiving-Christmas holiday period, but for potato and onion marketers, things are heating up. Both are staple items in all holiday feasts, so they are easy to find and easy for retailers to display, said Lauren Dees, marketing manager with Lake Park, Ga.-based onion grower-shipper Generation Farms. The holiday season is an important marketing and merchandising[Read More…]

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Idaho Potato Commission sees strong spud demand for quality crop

This is a crop that will sell itself. It’s a refrain that Frank Muir has heard more than once since he became president and CEO of the Idaho Potato Commission in 2003. But Muir had a message for those in attendance at the Commission’s 2019 Harvest Meeting, hosted Nov. 13 at the Shoshone-Bannock Hotel and Event Center. “Thirteen billion pounds[Read More…]

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Say Ciao! to Idaho Potato Commission’s display contest

The Idaho Potato Commission is sending a lucky produce manager to Italy as part of its 2020 Potato Lover’s Month Display Contest. Every entry in the upcoming contest, February through the end of March, is entered to win a week-long Italian vacation, with the total payout in prizes at more than $150,000. The contest cross-merchandises Idaho potatoes, Hormel Bacon Toppings and Fresh Gourmet products. Point-of-sale materials[Read More…]

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US: After backing out once, Oregon Potato Company offers to purchase one NORPAC facility

NORPAC Foods filed a motion in bankruptcy court Friday afternoon to sell its Quincy, Wash., plant for $93.5 million to Oregon Potato Company. However, no new sale has been proposed on the company’s plants in Salem, Brooks and Stayton. When the Salem-based farmer cooperative filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in August, it stated it intended to sell the majority[Read More…]

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US retail potato sales increased

Retail potato sales increased by 2.6% in dollar value and 1.1% in volume in the July-September quarter, the first of the marketing year. Potatoes USA reported volume increases for chips, frozen and refrigerated potatoes. Dehydrated and canned potatoes, and deli-prepared sides, declined in sales value. Deli dropped slightly in volume. Fresh-potato sales dropped slightly while dollar value rose. Reds dropped[Read More…]

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Study: Strong and effective industry outlook and business growth expected for chips and crisps market

A prominent firm Marketresearch.biz, in its recent market research report, suggests that the demographic data to its repository titled ‘Global Potato Chips and Crisps Market Incredible Possibilities, Growth Analysis and Forecast To 2028′  study for a strong and effective industry outlook and business growth. Potato Chips and Crisps market presents substantial inputs about the market size, regional trends, market share, and[Read More…]

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Potandon to focus on rebranding as the healthy potato company

The focus for Potandon Produce LLC at the New York Produce Show this year will be on the health benefits of potatoes, and particularly of some of Potandon’s proprietary products, according Glen Reynolds, vice president of variety sales and business development for the Idaho Falls, ID-based company. “We are in the process of rebranding our company as The Healthy Potato[Read More…]

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Huckleberry Gold potatoes gaining popularity with consumers

When the New York Times’ food and wine writer waxes poetic about your potato — “Inside the Huckleberry Gold’s purple jacket is a fine-textured potato with rich flavor” — you know you may have a winner on your hands… or at least on the dinner table! The “you” in this case happens to be Agricultural Research Service’s Small Grains and[Read More…]

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Tasteful Selections Small-Bite campaign touts comfort theme

Arvin, Calif.-based Tasteful Selections is bringing consumers the “Comfort in a Small Bite” marketing campaign. “As we move into the last theme of our Small Bite Campaign, we want to provide comforting recipes and flavors that our consumers can share during the holiday,” RPEMarketing Director Tim Huffcutt said in a news release.  Tasteful Selections LLC is a vertically integrated family-owned collection of farms[Read More…]

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US potato exporters optimistic about 2020 shipments

Mexico, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and the Philippines are the top five export market for Idaho potatoes, according to the Eagle-based Idaho Potato Commission.  Markets in Central America, the Caribbean and Hong Kong round out the top 10. U.S. potato and potato product exports have been on a growth trajectory in recent years, having risen 4.58% in volume and 4.63% in value[Read More…]

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Anything could still happen in the European potato season

On 10 September, the Northwestern European Potato Growers Association (NEPG) released figures about the potato harvest in that part of the world. These figures are an estimate based on several trial diggings. The result? The yield is estimated at between 27 and 27,3 million tons of potatoes. This is three percent higher than the five-year average and twelve percent more[Read More…]

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Idaho potato growers anticipate big spud crop this season

The Idaho potato season is well underway, with plenty of supplies for holiday dinners, marketers say. “Since the beginning of harvest in early August, we have focused on promoting the farms and packing facilities,” said Corey Griswold, COO with Hailey, Idaho-based grower-shipper ProSource Inc.  “Once harvest is complete and everyone settles in, I think this will shake out to be[Read More…]

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher

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