Food Chain must be addressed by Potato Council

April 14, 2015 Posted by David Linton

Fylde Fresh and Fabulous

The Research and Development section of the Potato Council must address the food chain, according to Fylde Fresh and Fabulous director and co-founder Colin Bradley.

“For too many years our emphasis in the potato industry has been research and development at production level,” says Colin.

As an industry, we have seen a steady decline in potato production and yet the Research & Development emphasis has been to produce more potatoes at less cost. The buying habits of consumers are changing. The fresh market sector is experiencing a decline as consumers look for convenience but also quality and that ‘something different’.

“We can’t just address the change in market by putting a mediocre prepared mashed potato on the supermarket shelves and expect a great upturn in consumption,” continues Colin. “We need to look at innovative potato products from around the world. We also have a very big job to do in educating those involved in the preparation of potatoes.”

We still have ready meal manufacturers buying potatoes for mash as a generic potato from pack-house waste material. This may work some of the time, but not all of the time, and will lead to inconsistency in quality. At FFF, we have developed a dedicated supply chain to deliver a consistent customer experience with our team taking a shared responsibility for the end product quality.

With some degree of satisfaction, Colin states “I am very happy that from 2016, 25% of the Potato Council Research & Development budget will address product innovation and product quality, with an end goal to ultimately drive up consumption. This is a significant step in the right direction.”

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