Sweet potatoes were already well-established in Central and South America by the time Christopher Columbus arrived in the late 1400s and peaked in popularity in the US in the 1930s before falling out of favour. With demand and output once again on the rise, sweet potato is now marketed in everything from dog food to vodka.
The European market for sweet potatoes is still relatively small, but it is growing rapidly with the UK and the Netherlands leading the way. While the US is the largest supplier, increasing demand has allowed other producing countries - such as Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece - to step up and cover both domestic consumption and exports.
In the UK, we are now seeing sweet potato used across a variety of food categories - including as an ingredient in pasta, cakes and ice cream. Such is its versatility, we at Aviko are working to drive growth in our Super Sweet Potato range across both foodservice and retail markets.
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