A P R I L 2 0 1 7 6 POTATO GROWER Kim Breshears, Marketing Program Director, Potatoes USA Foodservice is big business for the U.S. potato industry, now account- ing for 58% of all U.S. potato vol- ume sales in 2016 according to the Potatoes USA® 2016 U.S. Potato Sales and Utilization Report. Total potato sales at foodservice experi- enced 6% growth led by a 44% increase in dehy sales and a 34% increase in refrigerated potato sales to this channel. Frozen potato products still account for the lion’s share of sales to foodservice and grew by 4.5% in 2016. Understanding consumer’s attitudes and interest at foodservice is impor- tant for the potato industry to maintain the product’s strong pres- ence on menus. Potatoes USA recently commissioned Techono- mic, Inc. to conduct a patron study on consumer attitudes and usage related to potatoes when eating at restaurants and other foodservice establishments. The research vali- dated recent trends, but also identi- fied opportunities. Potatoes Drive Foodservice Traffic - More than half (54%) of patrons enjoy potatoes more than once a month while dining out. - Potato dishes represent three of the top four most frequently ordered side dishes. • #1 French Fries, #2 Salad, #3 Mashed Potato, #4 Baked Potato - 47% of patrons prefer meals that include potatoes over meals that do not. - 46% say meals with potatoes are a better value. - Consumers age 25-44 eat more potatoes at foodservice than any other age group. Versatility is Crucial for Consumers - 69% of patrons are looking for dishes that use potatoes in new, unexpected ways. - 54% of consumers want healthier potato options on the menu. - Consumers are seeking greater flexibility in customizing flavor pro- files for baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, potato chips and French Fries. French fries continue to reign supreme - On a volume basis, French Fries are the single largest menu application category, with 5.8 billion pounds sold into foodservice in 2016. • Mashed potatoes, hash Potatoes USA Mes sage New Research Shows Potato Sales Continue to Grow at Foodservice