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  • Writer's picturePaul Andrews

Rising Demands Prompts Opening Of UK's Biggest Mash Factory

Rising demand for mashed potato has prompted the opening of Britain’s biggest and most modern mash factory in Lincolnshire.

Last year Tesco shoppers alone bought more than one million more packs of fresh ready-made mash than in 2022 with the classic British staple proving very popular during the cost of living crisis.

While regular mashed potato is by far the most popular variety, it’s sweet potato mash that is currently creating the biggest stir with demand rocketing by more than 100 per cent in 2023 versus 2022.

Now, Branston, one of the UK’s largest potato suppliers, based in Lincolnshire, says it has worked with the supermarket to take the mash potato dining experience to the next level.

And so ambitious are the company’s plans to launch the ultimate mash factory that it has created 80 jobs to help it fulfil its ambitions.

Tesco Prepared Produce Buying Manager Alex Edwards said: “Britain’s millions of mash fans should be very excited by the news as our chefs have worked with Branston to excite existing recipes."

“What we’re planning to do is to take the mash-eating experience to the next level and make it more of a gourmet food that you’d find in an upmarket restaurant.”

Demand for fresh mash started rising shortly before Covid but lockdown encouraged a revival of Brits cooking from scratch as they had more time on their hands, which led to whole potatoes becoming more popular.

However as lockdown ended and people started returning to work demand for the fresh, ready-made mash start rising again and has continued to increase as a direct result of the cost of living crisis with mash being seen as an inexpensive and heart-warming old favourite.

Branston has worked with Tesco food chefs to improve existing recipes and turn them into gourmet dishes.

One example is Root Veg Mash where increases of parsnip, butter and seasoning will deliver a sweeter and fresher flavour with added creaminess.

Another change is for Bubble and Squeak where a richer recipe has been created to bring about a smoother taste.

And with the mash processing factory now being on site, the whole farm to fork process will bring about far fresher tasting products.

Branston CEO Jim Windle said: “We are proud and very excited to have brought the latest world class food manufacturing technology alongside restaurant quality recipe design to uplift and elevate one of Britain’s best loved foods."

“Mash is one of Britain’s favourite comfort foods that needed a 21st century makeover to delight and inspire customers across the new range.”


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