Latest news stories from around the World

Food technology company uses potatoes to create healthier processed meat products

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.

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Potato prices for Idaho farmers are up, but so are input costs

The global potato market is tight on supply and farm-level spud prices for Idaho farmers are up substantially. But so are farm input costs and, with prices for other Idaho crops also up significantly, many Idaho potato farmers may be faced with some tough planting decisions in 2022, writes Sean Ellis of the Idaho Farm Bureau Federation.

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USAID and CIP: Using science to revitalize Georgia’s potato sector

In 2019, the USAID Potato Program was launched, an initiative with a straightforward name and a straightforward objective: to give Georgia’s potato farmers the technologies, tools, and training they need to produce high-quality potatoes on a sufficient scale to compete with imports and drive economic growth in their communities. To help farmers overcome key challenges in the sector, USAID brought in the expertise of the International Potato Center (CIP).

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Potato Storage Insight to host participative course for potato growers and store managers

Potato Storage Insight (PSI) in the UK will be running a two-day, residential Potato Store Managers’ Course on 15/16 March 2022 at Retford, Nottinghamshire. “This is a participative course for growers and store managers who are involved in the day-to-day management of potato stores,” says PSI Director, Adrian Cunnington. “The course follows a format that’s tried and tested by the tutors and will include talks, group discussions and practical interactive sessions, focusing on all aspects of potato storage.”

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KFC Kenya runs out of imported fries, now considers local suppliers ‘who meet standards’

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’.

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Webinar: ‘Why host a World Potato Congress in Ireland’

The World Potato Congress announced its first webinar of 2022. In preparation for the World Potato Congress being held from May 30 to June 2, 2022 in Dublin, Ireland, Liam Glennon, Chairperson of the Local Organising Committee, Irish Potato Federation will present this webinar. The presentation will answer the question ‘Why host a World Potato Congress in Ireland’.

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Upcycled Uglies Kettle Chips gets a new look

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.

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French-fry airlift gives McDonald’s Japan a brief respite during shortage crisis

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.

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Albert Bartlett grows profits amid challenging conditions

Scottish potato specialist Albert Bartlett has underlined the challenges posed by Brexit and cost inflation amid the continued fallout from the pandemic after enjoying a surge in profits. The privately-owned firm grew turnover to £193.7m in the latest year, from £177.2m.

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CFIA: No new potato wart detected in national survey

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has completed its national survey for potato wart ahead of schedule, and potato wart was not detected, the agency says in a press release. The expedited completion of the survey marks an important step in the Government of Canada’s action plan to reassure international trading partners of the safety of Canadian seed potatoes, CFIA says in its press release.

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Meade farm ends 2021 on high note at awards

2021 ended on a high for Irish grower, packer and distributor Meade Farm Group. As
Caroline Allen reports for Agriland, the Meade family’s passion for potatoes in all shapes and forms was evident at the recent Irish Quality Food and Drink Awards. They scooped three gold awards for their fresh skinny chips, fresh chunky chips and potato starch in the foodservice category, as well as a silver gong for their white potatoes.

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UK farm business outlook 2022

Potatoes and sugar beet share some agronomic challenges but the structural ones differ. As Robert Harris reports for Farmers Weekly, the balance of margins in the potato sector needs addressing, while a whole-rotation costings approach to the beet crop could help grower decision-making. Many growers will be nursing financial damage or losses from the past two years of potato production.[Read More…]

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Fries in short supply due to Canada’s climate woes

A mix of drought in Canada’s prairies and flooding on its Pacific coast have brought about crop production and shipping woes now leading to international shortages of fries and mustard. In Japan, for example, McDonald’s has been forced to ration fries as the British Columbia floods squeezed potato imports, while mustard producers in France are forecasting steep price increases because the drought in another part of Canada – the world’s biggest producer of mustard grains – cut supplies.

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Borderlands: US potato farmers preparing for Mexico opening

After nearly 25 years of export bans, U.S. potato farmers could begin to distribute and sell more fresh potatoes across all of Mexico by early 2022. American potato farmers and exporters currently are barred from selling fresh potatoes in Mexico due to restrictions by the Mexican government, namely that U.S. growers can only sell them within about a 16-mile zone across the Mexican border.

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Trade ban clouds solid potato year for Canadian farmers

It was a good year for Canada’s potato farmers in 2021 with seeded and harvested acres and yields reaching levels not seen for more than a decade, according to Statistics Canada estimates. However, significant challenges remain with Prince Edward Island, the nation’s largest producer, dealing with an export ban while a tough weather year in the west might mean production will fall short of being able to meet an increase in processing capacity.

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Potato wart situation was ‘mismanaged,’ says Prince Edward Island farmer

A potato farmer on Prince Edward Island’s North Shore in Canada is wondering how the situation with potato wart got to the point where the U.S. border is closed to fresh potatoes from the Island. Klaas Nieuwhof told CBC’s Island Morning he was packing potatoes when he got a phone call and learned the border was closing.

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Ukraine negotiating potato exports to the EU

The State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection addressed the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Health and Food Safety with a proposal to consider the possibility of launching Ukrainian potato exports to the European Union. Ukraine and its European colleagues are currently discussing the need to appoint in 2022 inspections by European experts to launch Ukrainian potato exports to the EU.

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McDonald’s Japan cuts down on fries servings owing to potato scarcity from Canada

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.

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Calbee releases potato-growing kits in Japan

The potato chip company Calbee Inc. and a horticultural soil company jointly started selling seed potatoes and growing kits in southwest Japan’s Kyushu region on Dec. 15. Calbee Potato Inc., headquartered in the Hokkaido city of Obihiro, and Tokyo-based Protoleaf Inc. are selling seed potatoes of the “Poroshiri” variety and “Potato Bag” soil, which they jointly developed, to grow potatoes in a bag.

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Haith aiming to help food producers do more with less at Potato Expo 2022

The UK’s leading manufacturer of vegetable handling equipment is heading to Potato Expo next month to help US food producers achieve more with less. Haith Group, which has been designing and supplying innovative solutions for farmers, packers and food manufacturers for 75 years, will be promoting its Pro-Line solution in Anaheim, California, on 5th and 6th January during the Potato Expo 2022 event.

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Lukie Pieterse, Editor & Publisher

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