Potato production steps up for Christmas

Posted: 16 December 2016
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IN THE RUN UP TO CHRISTMAS potato packing at Branston’s three factories steps up to over 520,000 bags a day as demand soars for one of the nation’s favourite components to Christmas dinner.

Christmas dinner just wouldn’t be the same without the roasties, and Branston is in the midst of its very own ‘12 days of Christmas’ countdown.

“From 13th December we really start to see uplift in demand for spuds as families across the country prepare for the festive season,” said Ian Wait, Operations Director at Branston.

“During the lead up to Christmas our potato packing jumps from around 650 tonnes a day to over 1,300 for the peak days in the week before Christmas and our production facilities run around the clock to meet demand.

“Last year more than 16.2 million packs of potatoes were sold through UK retailers during the week up to Christmas; with every household in the UK purchasing an average of 1.6kg of potatoes for the holidays.”

Research shows that large family gatherings are the norm this festive season with 60% of households intending to cook dinner for six or more people. Less than a third (28%) of households will be eating alone or with just one other person.

Ian continued: “Potatoes are the cornerstone of festive dinners, shown by the huge surge in spud sales. King Edward and Maris Piper are the best known varieties for roasties as they have a fluffy texture that crisps up really well, but all our potatoes will make a great addition to Christmas – whether that’s at the main meal or to feed the family throughout the holidays.

“Last year on 23rd December, retailers saw a 1000% uplift compared to a normal day for purchases of white potatoes, with peak trading time at 10am. This year we’re expecting the greatest demand for packs of potatoes to be this date again, but with Christmas day landing on a Sunday, there may also be quite a few shoppers braving the supermarkets on Saturday too.”