South Australia produces 80% of the nation’s fresh washed potatoes and Potatoes SA CEO Robbie Davis is leading the charge to find fresh ways to slash the corresponding food waste. Starch left over from producing potato crisps is now being used to make a boutique vodka with help from Adelaide Hills Distillery and the University of Adelaide. The vodka is set to launch in January, and as for the taste? It’s described as “slightly earthy”… “We’re creating a vodka with flavour that’s mindfully sourced and sustainably made,” Potatoes South Australia CEO Robbie Davis says.
Robbie is also committed to another Potatoes SA project well underway with the university – this one focusing on scientifically creating a long-lasting, high-quality puree that ensures more “ugly potatoes” meet a more useful end. At the moment, shoppers demanding perfect potatoes in supermarkets are forcing primary producers to bin up to 40% of produce. This project takes on the ugly ducklings and purees them, skin and all.
“What we’ve perfected is a puree which is pure potato and some water with no added colour or preservatives and it will last a year if it’s chilled and has a shelf life of six months,” Robbie says. It has enormous export potential along with use in nursing homes and hospitals or in the baby or toddler food market.