‘Potatoes are bought every second by Irish consumers’

Did you know that potatoes are bought every second by Irish consumers? 1.67 million households purchase potatoes annually.

11% of all shopping trips in this country consist of potatoes. And, when a bag of ‘spuds’ is included in a shopping trolley, it contributes €27.90 more to the retailer, as consumers are usually carrying out ‘a big shop’.

According to Cliona Lynch, Kantar Worldpanel, there are two main factors that influence consumer purchasing. These are life stage and cohort.

She explained that consumers change what they consume over time, but they also carry behaviour with them. So, if someone has always bought marmalade or potatoes, they will continue to buy those products.

GMO potato, potatoes

Speaking at the National Potato Conference, Cliona explained that consumers are now moving back to potatoes from frozen potato products, sweet potatoes and couscous.

However – while potatoes remain the largest carbohydrate of the main meal – rice, pasta and frozen pizza remain strong competitors.

Potatoes (71%) and frozen potato products (13%) account for 84% of main meal carbohydrates.

Potato sales dropped in 2017, as consumers bought less volume and at a lower price. Shoppers bought an average volume of 3.4kg per shopping trip – a reduction of 2.9%.

Volume of potatoes being purchased

In 2017, the average volume of potatoes bought per household was 125kg/year. 2.5-5kg bags of potatoes have seen an increase in popularity since 2016, while 5-7.5kg bags have seen a decline.

Roosters continue to be the dominant variety for sale. However, Golden Wonders are becoming more popular among consumers, due to preference and a growth in frequency.

Dunnes Stores is the number one retailer of potatoes in Ireland and its share is growing year-on-year. Aldi consumers have been reported to be returning more often and paying a higher price for potatoes.