What can caterers do to rehabilitate the potato, cash in on its plus points? Advice from leading companies

Bannisters' Farm cheese and bacon-filled potato skins

In an article written for The Caterer, author Anne Bruce writes: “The potato may not enjoy the health kudos of other vegetables, but caterers can turn its enormous versatility and widespread popularity to good account by developing premium products that boost consumer spend. Where would a restaurant be without potatoes? …So what can caterers do to rehabilitate the potato, cash in on its plus points and get maximum value from potato-based products?” Bruce interviewed spokespeople from several leading potato companies in the UK and Ireland on their viewpoints. Nigel Phillips, UK & Ireland country sales manager at potato supplier Lamb Weston, says potatoes are a great host for all sorts of toppings and can benefit from trends such as street food. Mohammed Essa, general manager of Aviko UK & Ireland, says the biggest margins will be made on innovative, premium products that give customers value for money, and something different from what they would eat at home. Convenience remains key to operators when using potatoes, says supplier Farm Frites

Farm Frites It recently added a sweet potato fry to its range with one of the quickest cooking times on the market – 1.5 to two minutes. Nic Townsend, marketing manager UK and Ireland, says: “We know that speed is paramount to a successful serving and are proud that this product provides a great taste up to a minute faster than our competitors. That makes all the difference in busy kitchens.”

Chris Beckley, managing director of KFF, suggests that playing the provenance card is a great way of adding value to potatoes on the menu. KFF offers Bannisters’ Farm British potatoes from the Yorkshire Wolds.

Several other potato and catering company spokespeople were also interviewed for the purpose of this article.
Read the full article on The Caterer