Revitalising the humble spud with young consumers

 

To celebrate National Potato Day today, Bord Bia is encouraging people to #LikeShareCook Spuds and help move potatoes from ‘on-the-boil’ to ‘on-line’ in order to drive engagement with younger demographics. 

Earlier this year, Bord Bia research identified that generation Z (aged 18 to 23) consumers are interested in tasty, convenient recipes to cook, and appreciate the nutritional information of foods. However, an information gap exists as they do not believe potatoes are as deserving as other foods to photograph and share online due to a lack of visibility of suitable recipes. All this week, Bord Bia visited third level campuses around the country to encourage students to visit the potato.ie website for simple recipe inspiration and to share their favourite recipes on social media.

The campus tour ends today in UCC. Speaking at the event, Food Historian, Regina Sexton said: “I have long been fascinated by the cultural history of potatoes in Ireland. It’s really intriguing to see in recent years how a number of  traditional  Irish foods like oats and some ancient grain varieties been become popular again as consumers realise their nutritional value. Potatoes would be a well-deserving food to join this group as people become more aware of their nutritional benefits. I believe that this Bord Bia campaign is really worthwhile in celebrating this nutritional ingredient that has so much cultural and culinary significance in Ireland and I'm sure it will encourage people to share the potato dishes that they love online.” 

The Bord Bia research identified a number of ways to make potatoes more relevant to generation Z consumers. This included providing potato recipes that are attractive on Instagram and have a ‘modern twist’; providing cooking information, new recipes and information on how potatoes can feature in batch cooking. Also highlighted, was the role of potatoes in the fitness world and the dietary fibre contribution and versatility of the product. As part of the National Potato Day campaign, Bord Bia this week visited UCD, DCU, NUIG and UCC where students were given a ‘Potato Survival Kit’ which included time saving tips, nutritional advice, simple potato recipes, handy video links and some fresh potatoes to cook. Lorcan Bourke, Fresh Produce & Potato Manager Bord Bia said: “We know that Irish people love their spuds but our research identified barriers to potato purchase including a lack of awareness of the ease of preparation and nutritional benefits.  Potatoes were often associated with traditional cooking methods, with generation Z consumers unaware of their multicultural and international usage. This campaign aims to address this information gap by connecting with students and younger demographics.”