McDonald’s Russia turns to local fries from new processing plant, citing Western sanction woes

Related imageFrench fries at McDonald’s restaurants from Moscow to Murmansk will be Russian from now on, as the American fast-food chain turns to homegrown potatoes to deal with ruble volatility caused by fluctuating oil prices and Western sanctions. McDonald’s Corp, which opened in Russia in 1990 as the Soviet Union collapsed, has been gradually turning to local ingredients in its Russian outlets for everything from Big Macs to chicken burgers since it opened its doors there. But till now it had relied on frozen French fries from the Netherlands and Poland as Russian spuds weren’t quite right. Now a new plant near Lipetsk, a city 450 km (280 miles) south of Moscow, using potatoes grown on local farms will supply frozen fries to the chain of 651 outlets across Russia under a long-term contract, raising the share of the chain’s locally sourced products to 98 per cent. Globe and Mail report. Reuters report

McDonald’s becomes first restaurant company to set science based target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

Image result for mcdonaldsMcDonald’s announces it will partner with franchisees and suppliers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions related to McDonald’s restaurants and offices by 36% by 2030 from a 2015 base year in a new strategy to address global climate change. Additionally, McDonald’s commits to a 31% reduction in emissions intensity (per metric ton of food and packaging) across its supply chain by 2030 from 2015 levels. This combined target has been approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). Through these actions, McDonald’s expects to prevent 150 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions from being released into the atmosphere by 2030. This is the equivalent of taking 32 million passenger cars off the road for an entire year or planting 3.8 billion trees and growing them for 10 years. The target will enable McDonald’s to grow as a business without growing its emissions. More

‘I will pay a premium for Irish potatoes,’ says fast-food mogul

‘I will pay a premium for Irish potatoes’ – Pat ‘Supermac’ McDonaghSupermac’s supremo Pat McDonagh says the time has come to put Irish potatoes back on the map. Despite the iconic role the potato crop has played in Irish history, domestic potato production has decreased from 332,000ha in 1850; to just over 9,000ha today. Each year Ireland imports an estimated 50,000t of potatoes; with businessman McDonagh using up approximately 50t on a weekly basis to supply his multi-million euro empire of fast-food restaurants which includes: Supermac’s; Papa John’s Pizza; SuperSubs and Macs Place Diners. Although McDonagh sources all fresh potatoes for his franchises from suppliers nationwide, currently this weekly domestic supply is in the region of just 10t per week. However, just like his meat supply which is 100% Irish sourced, McDonagh is eager to expand his domestic potato supply. Speaking to AgriLand, he also revealed plans to develop a domestically-based fresh chips ventureMore

MacFry Potato Academy opens its doors to spud growers

Image result for mcdonalds potatoesAccording to a news report published by Farmers Guardian in the UK, potato growers supplying McDonald’s are set to benefit from the provision of free agronomy skills training to improve crop performance and quality with the launch of the MacFry Potato Academy. The Academy is a joint initiative between NIAB and McDonald’s UK and Ireland, in association with potato suppliers McCain Foods and Lamb Weston. MacFry Potato Academy is said to be a key component in ensuring a vibrant and sustainable potato industry that can secure a growing volume of great quality ingredients, according to McDonalds. McDonald’s UK agriculture manager, Peter Garbutt, said the MacFry Academy “is part of our commitment to helping UK potato farmers to run thriving businesses and continue to supply high quality potatoes that make perfect MacFries for our restaurants.” Report by Farmers Guardian

Nando’s and McDonald’s admit using McCain frozen chips from Scotland

HeraldScotland: Teen Taste with Alister Henderson @ Nando's, George Street, OxfordNando’s  and McDonald’s has admitted using McCain frozen chips from Scotland in its restaurants. Talk of the fries Nando’s use began when an ex-employee told a local newspaper that not all Nando’s food is fresh. Now the chain has confirmed they use McCain frozen chips claims but insists the chips are not the kind you would cook at home. “Our hugely popular chips are developed in partnership with McCain Food Services and the specific recipe is exclusive to Nando’s,” Nando’s spokesman has said. “They aren’t the same as their grocery products such as oven chips,” they said. A McDonald’s spokesman confirmed they are used in their branches too. “We work with two suppliers to make our world famous fries, McCain and Lamb Weston – partnering with them for over 30 years,” said a spokesman. More. And more

Hot potatoes: How the chip continues to dominate the British pub menu

Image result for Hot potatoes: How the chip continues to dominate the British pub menuPreviously the preserve of takeaway restaurants and fast-food joints, the humble chip has evolved into a pub classic. But what makes it such a staple, and what are the latest trends within the sector? It is a phrase uttered so often in the pub it has almost become second nature: “… and a portion of chips”. The go-to side alongside a light lunch, or just an extra add-on when you’re feeling particularly indulgent at dinner, chips (french fries) are a reliable, safe and enjoyable pub food option. It’s no wonder, therefore, that despite the trend towards healthier food in casual dining, chips remain near the top of the pub menu.  Continue reading

Hot arrival: Lamb Weston introduces ‘Crispy on Delivery’ fries

Lamb Weston introduces 'Crispy on Delivery': a comprehensive solution concept: special french fries, packaging and best practices - combined to get  Lamb Weston introduces a solution for fries that arrive hot and crispy via home delivery – new Crispy on Delivery is a comprehensive solution that goes from store to door. Crispy on Delivery fries maintain heat and crispiness for thirty minutes, while traditional fries start to lose their appeal after only five minutes. New Crispy on Delivery started with extensive research focused on customer satisfaction for home fry delivery. Lamb Weston identified three key areas that can impact delivered fry quality – the product, the packaging and best practices for delivery from store to door. “There’s nothing better than hot and crispy fries – one of the most loved foods in the world. We know we’ve got a solution to help our customers deliver on this,” said Mike Smith, SVP Growth & Strategy at Lamb Weston. “No one knows fries better than Lamb Weston – and our comprehensive approach to hot and crispy fries truly goes from the store to the door.” The new fry is lightly battered to withstand the challenges of delivery without sacrificing taste. Continue reading

McDonald’s french fries might cure hair loss, study finds

Just in case you needed another excuse to supersize your McDonald’s fries, everyone’s favourite crispy potatoes may actually help treat hair loss. Researchers at Yokohama National University in Japan discovered that an ingredient in McDonald’s crispy potato recipe may help with hair regrowth, Refinery29 reports. The study found that “Dimethylpolysiloxane,” a silicone that’s added to the oil to prevent splashing, can aid in the regeneration of “follicle germs” (aka, the spots where new follicles grow out). Dimethylpolysiloxane is an anti-foaming agent made of silicone added to the oil used to cook the famous fries. The silicone yielded some pretty impressive results after three days, which gives all those hair masks we’ve splurged on a run for their money. But there is a catch: The tests were only run on mice hair, not human hair. More

Japan now has french fry ice cream sundaes…

Japanese fast food chain First Kitchen has a bit of an image problem, in that it really doesn’t have much of an image. First Kitchen is often so low-key that it’s easy to overlook the chain, but we’re sure that its newest item, french fry sundaes, will help keep it in people’s minds. Going on this week at First Kitchen and First Kitchen/Wendy’s branches nationwide are two types of Dessert Potato, both of which start by taking a plate of french fries and adding a swirl of Hokkaido dairy-sourced vanilla ice cream. From there, the Choco Sundae Potato adds chocolate sauce and sprinkles. If you’re looking for a more Japanese taste, the Cream Zenzai Potato adds a second dash of Hokkaido flavor with azuki sweet red beans supplied by the northern island plus kuromitsu syrup for even more tempting sweetness. First Kitchen is touting the new desserts as a delicious exercise in contrasting extremes. More

 

US: Will Taco Bell’s new Nacho Fries affect the french fry supply?

Image result for nacho friesWhen ordering tacos from a food service outlet, the last thing you might expect would be this phrase: “Would you like fries with that?” Yet, on Jan. 25, across the nation, diners at Taco Bell will be presented with that question when the chain launches Nacho Fries. However, at the Food Institute, another question is asked: how will this affect the prices of french fries for the industry? Some quick math: if each of Taco Bell’s approximately 6,600 units sells just 100-lbs. of Nacho Fries each day, the company’s total annual usage would be about 240 million-lbs. This number represents roughly 1.5% of the 15.7 billion-lbs. of frozen french fries produced annually. For reference, McDonald’s units sell an average of 250-lbs. of french fries per unit every day, reported Bloomberg (April 19, 2012). Certainly, a lot remains to be seen regarding french fry pricing in the U.S. in the wake of Taco Bell’s new product. More

Report: 5 Key insights on the frozen potato market through 2022

global-frozen-potato-market.jpgAccording to a new study by Fact.MR,  global frozen potato market for frozen potato is estimated to bring in US$ 60,109.5 million revenue by 2022 end. The market is projected to register moderate growth of 4.0% CAGR during the forecast period 2017-2022. The growing business of quick service restaurants and increase in disposable income of consumers are some of the key factors fuelling the growth of the frozen potato market globally. Manufacturers are focusing on using advanced technology for refrigeration at the right temperature, thereby preserving frozen potato for a longer period of time. Some insights discussed in the report show how the global frozen potato market will perform in the next five years. Europe is expected to dominate the global frozen potato market, and North America is expected to emerge as the second most lucrative market. By the end of 2022, modern trade is projected to exceed US$ 25,100 million revenue. More

How chocolate fries and Pikachu helped turn around McDonald’s Japan

McDonald’s Japan took a series of hits starting in 2014 that threatened to crack its Golden Arches: a supplier was selling expired chicken, a human tooth was found in french fries and a child was injured by a plastic shard inside a sundae. Sales plummeted to their lowest since the company went public in 2001, and the chain closed hundreds of restaurants. McDonald’s Corp. in the US said it was considering selling its 49.9 percent stake in the Japanese company as losses piled up. Yet CEO Sarah Casanova decided to counter-punch. Casanova revamped the menu to add local flavors like the pork-and-ginger “Yakki Burger” and quirky headline-grabbing items like chocolate-covered fries. She gave many outlets a facelift and also forged a partnership featuring Pokemon characters. Since then, the shine has returned to the arches. McDonald’s Japan stock closed at an all-time high Sept. 11 as part of a 62 percent increase this year. More

Taiwanese french fry suppliers to be checked amid food concerns

Taiwan’s health authorities will conduct stringent checks of potato suppliers after reports that French fries served at fast food restaurants were found with green patches. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) official Cheng Wei-chih said that potatoes can turn green due to exposure to enough light. However, consuming a large amount of green potato can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea as it often contains a toxic chemical called solanine. No regulations regarding the maximum level of solanine are imposed yet, Cheng added. The scoop of green-tinted potatoes was first posted online by a user of PTT, the largest terminal-based bulletin board system (BBS) in Taiwan. He wrote that his tongue felt weird when he was eating potato wedges at McDonald’s and he found there was a green tint in the food. McDonald’s later responded that the company has adopted strict control measures requiring suppliers and workers to remove green potatoes. More

Were McDonald’s fries better before the ’90s?

In February, The Ringer website ranked McDonald’s french fries as the third-best fast food item in America. But some think that McDonald’s fries used to be much, much better. On a recent episode of his podcast Revisionist History, Malcolm Gladwell uncovered a change that McDonald’s made in its fries in 1992. Were the fries better before then? Gladwell and Joe House discussed the change on the latest episode of House of Carbs. Said Gladwell: “I remember, as I’m sure you remember, how good McDonald’s french fries were back in the day. When I was a teenager and I went to McDonald’s all the time, I went there because of the fries. And then at a certain point, the fries didn’t taste the same. They sucked. I go back there now and they’re not the fries I grew up on. And so I’ve always been curious about this. What happened?” Read the transcript of the discussion on The Ringer website – the transcript has been edited and condensed. Listen to the full podcast here

Acrylamide: Save our fries! Belgians say EU spares national dish

Image result for Save our fries! Belgians say EU spares national dishAccording to a Reuters report, Belgium’s national dish, the deep fried potato sticks that much of the English-speaking world gallingly calls “French fries“, has been saved. So, at least, the national government said last week as the European Union agreed to amend food safety rules aimed at curbing cancer. Belgium’s farm minister claimed the EU will now spare the nation’s “friteries” from having to change traditional preparation methods. “The Belgian fry is saved! Europe has listened to Belgium,” Agriculture Minister Willy Borsus said in a statement. In a statement issued in Brussels, the European Commission said EU governments had agreed to its proposals to force cafes and restaurants to apply measures aimed at reducing the presence of carcinogenic acrylamide in food. Frying, baking and roasting produce the substance out of natural acids and sugars. Some argue that Belgium’s traditional method of frying potatoes twice to get crunchy chips creates more acrylamide. Reuters report