It’s where the Lamb Weston / Meijer story starts: with The value of the potato. Friday 17 September 2021
The coming months Lamb Weston / Meijer publishes some ‘tasty potato sound bites’ on social media.
At Lamb Weston, potatoes are their crowning glory. It is the base of their products and therefore, it’s where the story starts. Lamb Weston sees potatoes as a product of nature with endless potential. Time to go a little more in-depth on what makes this crop our most beloved valuable.
To know the potential of a potato means to know every aspect of it. From planting to harvesting, from nutrients to specific qualities of each kind. To create quality products, you need to know what to use. Only then you can control the process and explore the power of the potato.
To the roots of our product
Follow a potato plant into the ground, and you’ll find true beauty at the roots. A potato is a great crop, that contains a lot of healthy nutrients. Minerals, like potassium, phosphorus and calcium, but also vitamin C and different types of vitamin B. That makes them more nutrient-rich than other sources of carbohydrates.
At Lamb Weston, they use about fifteen different species of potatoes, each with its own unique qualities. The company nourishes those qualities carefully, by working together with their farmers. On a daily basis, they gather potatoes from over 600 farmers in different areas. They make sure the favourite crop stays in perfect shape.
A local base
Though potatoes were originally brought to Europe by the Spaniards, the Lamb Weston potatoes originate mainly from the HAFPAL-region. HAFPAL stands for Hannover, Frankfurt, Paris and LeHavre. Lamb Weston / Meijer also has other areas where they grow their potatoes, in the UK, Austria and Russia.
The factories are located in these same areas, to be able to locally prepare their product. In these factories, we process the potatoes into different shapes and sizes and carefully package them.
A healthy harvest
When it’s mid-February, the potatoes are planted and the potato season starts. The first potato that’s being harvested, is taken out of the soil in June. The season then lasts to October. Depending on the species of potato and the time of harvest, a potato has different qualities. For instance, a floury texture means the potato contains a lot of starch. For fries Lamb Weston needs potatoes that contain more water, which makes them a little waxier. The whole process is managed with care and attention, to keep the potatoes healthy. Together with farmers, Lamb Weston / Meijer invests in ways to make the crop more resistant to diseases and reduce the use of plant protection products. After harvest, most of our potatoes are kept in special storages. Here temperature is constantly monitored, to ensure quality fries all year round.
Next to being healthy and nutritious, a potato is also very sustainable. In comparison to rice, potatoes need five times less water and less surface area to grow. Also, around 80% of a potato plant is eatable, making it a very efficient source of food.
With such a sustainable crop, you need to make sustainable choices. Climate-change has a big effect on our products and Lamb Weston / Meijer needs to address that responsibly. That’s why the employees work every day to get the most out of these potatoes, now and for the future. Not only do they put their factories where their potatoes are, they also commit themselves to sustainable cultivation.
Lamb Weston / Meijer focuses on soil, to create enabling conditions for our most important ingredient. With the right balance of organic materials, they facilitate healthy roots. In turn, healthy roots grow a powerful potato plant, as they can take up all the necessary nutrients. By being able to withstand diseases and plagues, this healthy plant then proudly becomes the source of the sustainable Lamb Weston potato products.