Potato sales hit record in 2020 in U.S. amid lockdown boost

Boosted by lockdowns, U.S. potato sales hit record in 2020

Boosted by lockdowns, U.S. potato sales hit record in 2020

Total potato sales at retail were at five-year record highs for both dollar and volume sales in 2020, according to Potatoes USA.

Potatoes were consistently one of the highest performing produce items in terms of year-on-year growth, as consumers looked to purchase longer-lasting fruit and vegetables during the lockdowns.

Dollar sales increased by 16% compared to 2019 and all categories, except deli-prepared sides, grew by double-digit dollar sales.

Dehydrated recorded the highest sales increases in dollars by 30% and volume sales by 25%. Canned and bottled saw the second-largest dollar increase at 29%, and frozen had the second-largest volume increase at 23%.

The largest growth in dollar and volume sales for potatoes occurred from April through June - the onset of the pandemic - although all months grew by over 9% for both metrics.

Fresh sales increased by almost 21% in dollars and 15% in volume. All types increased in dollar and volume sales by at least 6%.

Within the fresh category, medley potatoes had the highest dollar and volume sales increase with dollar sales by 34% and volume sales by 38%.

While all package sizes saw double-digit growth in dollar sales, one-pound through four-pound bags saw the largest increase, growing by 24% in dollars and 19% in volume.

Five-pound bags make up 47% of all package sizes bought at retail, and grew in dollars and volume sales by double-digits compared to 2019.

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