( Photo: Alejandro Duarte; Source: Unsplashed )

The COVID-19 pandemic has elevated potato sales at retail since mid-March, with most categories benefiting from sales as people prepared meals at home instead of going to restaurants.

Fresh potato sales in dollars at retail increased by 46% between March 16 and June 14, according to Potatoes USA, when compared to the same time period from a year ago. The promotion group, citing numbers from Chicago research firm IRI, said the volume of potatoes sold at retail in that 3-month window increased 35%.

Almost every type of fresh potato saw double-digit growth in dollar sales, and all categories except fingerlings saw a boost in volumes sold, according to a news release from Potatoes USA.

“Yellow potatoes showed the largest increase in both dollar and volume sales,” according to the release. “Dollar sales increased by 54%, and volume sales increased by 42%.”

Other types of potatoes are also seeing increased sales at retail:

  • The sales of all retail potato products rose 31% in dollars and 32% in volume;
  • All potato categories across retail increased in dollar and volume sales, except for deli sides;
  • Dehydrated potato products had the largest increase in dollar and volume sales, with 59% and 49%, respectively;
  • Deli-prepared sides dropped 23% in dollar sales and 24% in volume sales; and
  • Frozen potato sales in dollars from March 16-22 saw 120% increase.

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