McDonald’s ‘customizes’ its fries

FRIESMcDonald’s is trying Shakin’ Flavor Fries again, but this time with a new positioning that’s in line with its Create Your Taste platform and with millennials’ affinity for DIY dining. Shakin’ Flavor Fries now have their own webpage on the McDonald’s USA site–suggesting a wider rollout is likely soon – and a new pitch: “Customize Our World Famous Fries With Your Favorite Flavor.” More

US: Tri-State varieties expanding abroad

Foreign countries are showing increasing interest in potato varieties developed in the Pacific Northwest and managed by the Potato Variety Management Institute. Officials say Tri-State Potato Research and Breeding Program varieties are beginning to find their way into farm fields throughout the world. A business in Quebec, Canada, has reached an agreement for the exclusive Canadian rights to the Tri-State fresh variety Pomerelle Russet, according to Jeanne Debons, executive director of the Potato Variety Management Institute, which markets the program’s spuds. Furthermore, a German company is evaluating seven Tri-State russets and expanding seed, interested in securing exclusive European rights. More

Russische ambassade in Nederland: “Afschaffen boycot afhankelijk van EU-sancties”

Oleg Pugaev, Agricultural Counsellor van de Russische ambassade in Nederland, sprak met FreshPlaza en AGF over de situatie en de ontwikkelingen rond de boycot. Segt Pugaev: “Het gemiddelde areaal is redelijk stabiel met 2,2 miljoen hectare. Vorig jaar importeerde Rusland rond de 10.500 ton pootgoed uit Nederland. In 2015 steeg dit naar 15.000 ton. De oorzaak ligt in de plannen van de Russische telers om efficiënter te werken door beter pootgoed te gebruiken en ze zijn bereid daar meer voor te betalen.” Meer

UK: The right position for Electis in the fight against blight


Late blight in potatoes requires a full protective programme, starting at the rosette stage and running right through to harvest. UK growers have a wide choice of effective fungicides and need to put together the right programme using the right products at the right time, according to Gowan Comércio. Technical Manager Robert Plaice says that applying fungicides in a proactive and flexible way is the key to success, especially with the more virulent blight strains we have to tackle. Continue reading

Is PepsiCo really 50 years old? Maybe, or maybe not

PepsiCo Inc. has taken the 50th year of its founding to run a series of advertisements to celebrate the occasion. The trouble is that the claim is not entirely accurate, at least to the extent to which Pepsi-Cola was first a product in 1898 and then a company called Pepsi-Cola in 1902. PepsiCo has, for some reason, has used its merger with Frito-Lay, which was founded in 1961, maybe, based on PepsiCo’s convenient memory of history, to create a birthday. More

McDonald’s diners are still staying away in droves

The world’s largest restaurant chain has reported another month of poor U.S. sales. The much hoped for McDonald’s turnaround can’t come soon enough. The struggling hamburger chain reported that comparable sales in its biggest market, the United States, fell 2.2% in May, much worse than the 1.7% Wall Street analysts were anticipating, according to Consensus Metrix. This is the last time McDonald’s will report monthly sales. Beginning next month, the company will only report on a quarterly basis. More

India: Certified potato seed to be provided for free to select farmers

The Department of Horticulture has launched a programme of promoting the sowing of certified potato seeds in Hassan. All these years, farmers were getting table potatoes from Punjab for sowing. On an experimental basis, the department has procured 136 quintals of certified seeds from Gurdaspur in Punjab, which will be distributed among a select group of 65 potato growers in the district. More

US: Potato leafhoppers arrive sooner due to climate change

The potato leafhopper (Empoasca fabae) is a tiny insect with a bright lime-green color that helps it blend in against plant leaves. Despite its unassuming appearance, this little pest causes big headaches for farmers across the eastern half of the United States. By feeding voraciously on many crops, including potatoes, green beans, and alfalfa, the migratory potato leafhopper causes untold millions of dollars in damage every year. Now, a study by entomologists at the University of Maryland and Queens College at the City University of New York suggests that climate warming could be making this problem worse. More

Ireland: Former Tesco potato supplier fails to have action against supermarket fast-tracked

tescoA former potato supplier to supermarket giant Tesco has failed to have an action for alleged breach of contract and personal injuries entered into the fast track Commercial Court list. Paul Sweeney, trading as Paul Sweeney & Co, Newcastle, Co Dublin, is suing Tesco Ireland claiming he spent millions between 1998 and 2006 investing in facilities based on an agreement to supply potatoes for the Irish stores but which the supermarket firm terminated without reasonable notice. Mr Sweeney is also claiming damages for bullying, nervous shock, assault and battery arising out of meetings and contacts with a Tesco executive during negotiations on the agreement to supply the stores. More

Aardappelprijs Alvantho onder niveau 2014

Terwijl het aardappelseizoen vorig jaar in mineurstemming begon bij aardappelveiling Alvantho op het Zeeuwse Sint-Annaland, is dat dit seizoen totaal anders. Alhoewel de prijzen niet eens zoveel verschillen met de lage resultaten van de primeuraardappeloogst 2014. Zo bracht Dore met een aanvoer van 1800 kisten 0,60 tot 0,66 cent op. Dat is zelfs iets minder dan in 2014 toen deze aardappel het met 0,65 tot 0,68 cent moest doen. Meer

Potatoes won over skeptical but hungry Europeans

How important are potatoes? Pretty important. Not the most important: According to Smithsonian Magazine, potatoes rank fifth on the essential scale, following wheat, corn, rice and sugar cane. But even if more people today depend on wheat or corn for survival, potatoes have had a tremendous run: Historian William McNeill believes the potato’s capacity to feed rapidly growing European populations from 1750-1950 is what allowed a few Western nations to rule the world. Europeans were initially skeptical of the potato. But the potato’s contributions to the food supply ultimately won over the holdouts. More

Australia: Dollar drop chips in to help spud industry

Potato growers say a decline in processed imports like french fries have been a big help for their industry. NSW grower and Ausveg chairman Geoff Moar has been harvesting up to 1,200 tonnes of spuds a week on his southern Riverina farm. He admits potato prices could be better, but the drop in the Aussie dollar is starting to make a difference. More

Belaya Dacha, Farm Frites in joint venture to supply McDonalds with fries throughout Russia

Agricultural producer Belaya Dacha is ready to begin construction of a factory in the Lipetsk region that will supply french fries to McDonald’s fast food restaurants throughout Russia, Vedomosti reported Friday. Belaya Dacha will work with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, which will have 35 percent of the venture, and Dutch potato farmer Farm Frites, which will be a 30 percent partner, the Russian company’s founder Viktor Semyonov said. More than 100 million euros will be invested in the project. The first harvest is planned for 2016, for which 500 to 700 tons of seed will have to be imported from Holland. More

UK: Volume sales of potatoes down, exports up

Potato Council in the UK has published its latest Potato Market Dynamics Report. According to the Report, Over 2013, volume sales of potatoes have fallen. In the latest 52 weeks, volume sold were 8% behind last year, equivalent to 133,000 fewer tonnes. Of the three main categories, economy have accounted for more than half of the total market volume drop (despite being a very small share of the market), with volumes falling by over 71,000 tonnes. This could have been driven by a range of factors such as quality and shelf space. The Report further says that export growth of 4% for the period Jun-Nov ‘13, compared with Jun-Nov ’12, is driven by fresh/raw (up 22%) and in spite of an 11% fall in processed (raw equiv.). When examining the latest monthly data (Nov ‘13), exports, compared with Nov ’12, increased by 38%. In this month, processed exports were up 30% and fresh/raw exports were 17% higher when compared with Nov ‘12. Full report