Facts you never knew about potatoes

May 7, 2015 Posted by David Linton


As wholesale suppliers of potatoes and chips to many ready meal manufacturers, food service providers and chips shops throughout the UK, we’re always eager to share our potato knowledge so you know we’re passionate about what we do.

So to kick-off May, we’ve collated some interesting facts about potatoes for the millions of people out there who eat this renowned vegetable on a regular basis.

First vegetable to be grown in space

Processed potatoes from Fylde Fresh and Fabulous come straight from our farming facilities, as would be expected from any wholesale potato and chip supplier. But that wasn’t the case for researchers at the University of Wisconsin in the 1990s who worked with NASA to find a way for potatoes to be grown in space so to feed astronauts on long space voyages.

The technology they eventually created was a success and in late 1995 seeds germinated on the space shuttle Columbia and soon after the potato became the first vegetable grown in space.

Fourth largest crop production

You don’t need to be a processed potato or production company to know that potatoes are always high in demand, so it shouldn’t be too surprising to hear that the potato sits in fourth place in terms of the world’s most produced crop behind corn, wheat and rice.

It’s clear to see why when you consider that wheat can grow in hot and cold climates and corn is used in alcohol as well as in food production. This does tell us, however, that the potato is top of the non-grain food products produced worldwide.

China is the world’s largest potato producer

If you were to see a Made in China label on every potato that was produced in the world’s most populated country, you would be seeing it on close to one in every four spuds.

That’s because China produces just under a quarter of the world’s total potatoes, approximately 90 million metric tonnes a year; almost double that of their closest competitor, India, and more than four times the amount produced by the United States despite potatoes being grown in every state.

We can survive on a diet of just potatoes

Well, with at least a bit of dairy in our diet this is conceivable. Potatoes exactly like the ones produced at Fylde Fresh and Fabulous are packed full of healthy minerals and vitamins that allow humans to use them almost single-handedly as a food source.

Vitamins B6, B3 and C are all present in potatoes along with a good balance of potassium and copper, controlling blood levels and building body tissue respectively. Unfortunately, potatoes are missing the crucial Vitamins A and D that contribute towards the ideal intake, but these can easily be found in many dairy products with milk and butter being the best examples.

Guinness World Record for potatoes

Our list wouldn’t be complete without a world record and in the history of the Guinness World Records, potatoes are bound to crop (pun intended) up somewhere. Of course they do, but we’re not going to focus on the largest ever potato, we were after something a little bit wackier like the most mashed potato eaten in 30 seconds.

This record stands at 290 grams and was achieved just last year in Queens, New York, by American Ashrita Furman who holds a further 200 Guinness World Records. To put his mash scoffing into perspective, that’s approximately the same weight as one and a half two litre bottles of soft drink. It’d be difficult enough drinking that amount in 30 seconds, never mind eating that weight in mashed potatoes!

< Back to Blog

Fylde Fresh & Fabulous, Preston - Fylde Fresh & Fabulous, Stanley Villa Farm, Back Lane, Weeton, Preston PR4 3HN

Call Us: