Monthly Archives

May 2014

Sweet Potatoes’ ever increasing demand

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Sweet potatoes are proving to be unstoppable in their popularity. Rush Group’s Sam Crocker says that the sweet potato business is growing because the public have taken to these healthy root vegetables.

What was once a speciality vegetable is now seen as a staple in peoples’ diets and their shopping baskets. So what has created this increase in sales? Sweet potatoes have always been popular in America, where they have been traditionally associated with Thanksgiving, but now Europeans have started to use them increasingly in their everyday cooking. There is probably not one definitive answer, but here are a few reasons why sweet potatoes are growing in popularity.

The name

The fact they have ‘potato’ in the name has probably helped these roots become a part of our weekly shop. Consumers can easily and confidently make the swap from traditional potatoes to sweet potatoes.

Health properties

Sweet potatoes are recognised as being a healthier alternative, particularly high in Vitamin A and C.

Versatility

Like the white potato, the sweet potato is amazingly versatile. In fact it can be used in any way a white potato is used (with some slight cooking variations of course). Particular areas of growth in the sweet potato market can be seen in processed products such as sweet potato crisps and sweet potato chips.

Whatever the reason or reasons, Rush Group has seen its sales grow year on year for the past 5 years.

If you are looking for a reliable source of sweet potatoes, please contact Sam Crocker.

Rush Group’s Spanish potato business

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Ken Couceiro has been trading fresh produce with Rush Group since 1991. Ken specialises in importing mainly potatoes from Spain and in return exporting British potatoes to various Spanish customers.

Ken is bilingual thanks to his Spanish parents, meaning that there are no communication issues, when speaking to both customers and growers. Rush also has an office in Portugal, managed by Jose Nazare, which further entrenches the Group’s activities in this part of Europe.

Rush Group exports British potatoes from S.W. England, Herefordshire, Midlands and Scotland to companies spread out throughout Spain, but with concentrated areas of clients in Barcelona and Madrid. Spanish customers do not have the large cold storage stores that are available in UK, so when their native supply of white potatoes runs out, they need to import these specialist potatoes from either Great Britain or France. Rush Group’s expertise allows them to compete with other countries on quality, logistics and of course price; meaning that there is a reliable supply of potatoes 52 weeks a year, delivered at the right time, to the right quality and at the right price.

Rush also has strong ties with its Spanish growers in the south of the country, who supply them with Frisia, Liseta, Agria and Melody varieties in the three month period of April – June, ahead of the UK’s own supply.

As well as potatoes, Rush Group also has strong ties with Spanish growers of onions, sweet potatoes and butternut squash.

If you need a reliable source of Spanish potatoes, or can supply Rush with an equally reliable crop, please contact Ken Couceiro today.

Rush Group’s onion business growing

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Rush Group’s Nat Bacon recently took over the Group’s onion sector, and over the past five months the quantity of brown and red onions they have handled has steadily grown.

Rush Group continues to discover and develop different markets around the world, and this has facilitated the increase in their onion business as the season has progressed. It has allowed them to deal with the different range of sizes, shapes and quality that has resulted from the relatively poor growing season in Europe last year.

The main focus for onions this year has been:

  • UK brown onions (40-60mm) exported to Eastern Europe
  • Egyptian red onions (60-80mm) imported to the UK
  • French brown onions, any size to Eastern Europe and the UK
  • German onions to Eastern Europe
  • French shallots to Eastern Europe

Nat believes that the fact that Rush Group has offices in Poland and Hungary (with native speakers on the ground) greatly supplements their ability to give their customers in Eastern Europe a reliable supply of onions, 364 days of the year. Clients appreciate the security of having a presence in their geographical region, someone they can talk to face to face that speaks their language and who gives them options.

With the northern hemisphere’s season soon coming to an end, Rush Group will still be able to supply their customers with red and brown onions and shallots, as they have strong production programmes with growers in New Zealand, Egypt, and Chile

If you are looking for a 365 days a year supply of onions, delivered at the right time and for the right price, please contact Nat Bacon today.