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

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

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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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