Tesco has become the latest supermarket to start selling farmer’s surplus stock that has been created by the closure of pubs, restaurants and fast food outlets during the coronavirus outbreak.
The supermarket group said it was working with UK potato growers that have been left with excess quantities of particular varieties that are usually made into chips
Tesco has teamed up with potato supplier Branston to take these potatoes, that were previously destined for the catering trade, and sell them in its stores. The supermarket said the ‘chipping varieties’ may have some skin blemishes but are “perfectly delicious”.
They will be sold as part of Tesco’s ‘Perfectly Imperfect’ range. The bags will carry a sticker stating ‘I’m not looking my normal gorgeous self but I still taste great, buy me and support British farmers’.
Tesco revealed that demand for potatoes has increased since lockdown with sales growing by an average of 30% across its stores.
Tesco Potato Buying Manager Ben Rowbotham said: “Taking these surplus potatoes not only helps meet the extra demand at the moment but also supports growers at a time when many are facing a real struggle to keep their businesses going.”
Branston Commercial Director Richard Clark added: “We are working with Tesco to support our potato growers and ensure we honour our existing contracts with them. We now have the opportunity to get additional types of potatoes too, which would have otherwise been destined for chip shops and restaurants.”
Last month, Morrisons announced that it was rolling out special steak and seafood bars which will sell a wider selection of meat and fish that had been destined for the restaurant trade to help struggling British farmers and fishermen.
Meanwhile, Aldi recently revealed that it was buying additional volumes of British beef to support farmers faced with surplus product due to closures of restaurants and catering businesses.