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Market Intelligence

In-home Consumption

28 February 2017

The usage of potatoes in in-home and carried-out meal occasions has declined slightly in the past year, despite the overall number of meal occasions remaining unchanged. 5.5 billion portions of fresh potatoes and 2.8 billion portions of frozen potato products were eaten in the last year. 15% of all meal occasions included fresh or frozen potatoes. (Kantar Worldpanel Usage, 52 week data ending 26 Feb 2017)


What potatoes are consumers eating?

  • Fresh main crop potatoes account for 40% of meal occasions where fresh or frozen potatoes were consumed, while chips accounted for 21%. 14% of occasions were baking potatoes, and new potatoes and other frozen potato products both accounted for 11%.


When are potatoes being eaten?

  • 84% of potato meal occasions were evening meal occasions.

Who is eating potatoes?

  • Potatoes are eaten across all life stage groups, but retirees are particularly key for fresh potatoes while young families are important for frozen potato products.


How are consumers eating fresh potatoes?

  • Mashed potatoes are the most popular method of potato preparation, followed by cooking new potatoes, roast potatoes and then baked potatoes. 

What are consumers eating potatoes with?

  • Fresh potato consumption is supported by consumer’s inclusion in Roast dinners and pairing with Pies/Pasties. Potatoes feature in a variety of the nation’s top 20 favourite meals, although apart from roast dinners most of these meals rank below 10th.
  • Potatoes in the nation’s top 20 meals:
    3. Roast with fresh potatoes and veg
    12. Stew with fresh potatoes and veg
    15. Shepherd’s pie
    16. Pizza and prepared potatoes
    17. Chicken with fresh potatoes and veg
    18. Pie with fresh potatoes and veg
    Top 10 dishes such as Soup, Curry and Stew could also contain potato depending on the recipe.
    Source: AHDB/Kantar Worldpanel Usage 52 w/e Nov 16


A look at roasts

  • In the 52 w/e 26 Feb 17 potatoes were eaten at 88% of all roast dinner meal occasions, with fresh roast potatoes featuring at 52% of roast dinner occasions, this has increased over the past two years from 46% in the 52 w/e Mar 15.  However, the overall quantity of fresh potatoes eaten at a roast dinner has seen a slight decline from 80% in 2015 to 78% in 2017.


  • If you look at roast potato consumption in the context of all occasions where fresh potatoes are eaten, roast dinners account for 17% of these occasions.


  • The frequency at which roast dinners are eaten has remained relatively stable over the past three years, with approximately 23% of households having fresh roast potatoes weekly. Older dependents and families with older children (aged 10+) are the most likely to over index on roast dinner occasions.

Carb Context

  • Potatoes are the second most popular carbohydrates after bread. Total carbohydrate consumption has been flat with only pasta and cous cous showing sizeable increases in consumption compared to the previous year. .

Changing consumer trends

  • Consumer tastes are trending towards the quick and easy; meals cooking times are steadily declining and low-involvement, pre-prepared dishes and accompaniments are gaining popularity. There is also a shift from traditional meat-and-two-veg meals to dish-based cuisine, such as curries and pasta dishes.




AHDB Potatoes activity

The primary focus of AHDB Potatoes marketing activity is on the consumer, which benefits all routes to market.
  • Research: understanding the consumer is key to driving consumption and AHDB Potatoes has invested in researching this area. These insights can help ensure that the right products are available to ensure that we sustain demand for the potato.  See summaries of our recent research on usage & attitudes and the shopper journey.
  • Promotion: AHDB Potatoes runs promotion campaigns aimed at younger consumers who eat fewer potatoes than their parents. All activity is based on understanding the consumer and how we can increase the number of potato meals they eat.
  • Education: AHDB Potatoes education programmes make sure we reach the future potato consumers. For example, over two-thirds of Primary Schools take part in the Grow Your Own Potatoes project – reconnecting children with where their food comes from and how potatoes fit in a healthy balanced diet.

Market Information

AHDB Potatoes has carried out extensive research into potato consumers. If you have a specific question please do get in touch at .