Sweet potatoes will be used in foodservice even more this year, sources say.
There is more interest in foodservice overall, said Wayne Garber, partner in Garber Farms, Iota, La., and the foodservice outlook remains positive.
Jimmy Burch, owner of Burch Farms, Faison, N.C., said foodservice demand is strong and growing.
Roy Hansen, sales manager at Dawson Farms, Delhi, La., said the use of sweet potatoes in the foodservice industry keeps increasing and more restaurants are carrying sweet potato products.
Some companies in the sweet potato industry are creating sweet potato packages for use in the restaurants.
Wayne E. Bailey Produce Company, Chadbourn, N.C., is putting together a package that includes sweet potatoes this year that’s similar to frozen french fries, but it’s fresh, George Wooten, president and part owner, said.
“It’s called the sweet potato fresh fry,” Wooten said.
The company is marketing the package to the foodservice industry in 3-pound bags. Bags will include the fresh-cut fries and 500 grams of batter mix, which will come in a sweet or rice batter. The rice batter is gluten-free.