Summer 2022 broke records in terms of heat, with very dry weather ! This drought, unprecedented in France, has greatly affected agricultural land and water reserves. But this extreme climate has also penalized farmers and their crops. Thus, we must expect to pay the consequences on our food basic. Find out how fries, very popular among the French, are already affected by this crisis.
The price of fries on the rise for lack of rain
In effect, Drought greatly impacted potato production. So the prices of this product skyrocket. But let’s not forget that it is the basic ingredient of fries! Whether the soil of the fields remains too dry, the harvested potatoes are still growing, but their caliber becomes smaller than usual. However, the standards provide that the tubers must reach more than 35 mm in diameter. Below this standard size, farmers struggle to sell their stock.
In recent history, Europe had already experienced a shortage of potatoes in 1976. Belgium was then deprived of her beloved fries !
Cultivate differently in the face of drought
This year, hot and dry weather reigned supreme across Europe. In Romania, for example, farmers had to give up irrigating nearly 50% of potato crops. A situation that reduces supply, and necessarily increases the price of fries.
According to experts, the weather will change for good in the next few years. Faced with this new climate, it will probably be necessary to change the variety to be cultivated. Also, if we want to continue eat french frieswe will have to turn to other species of potatoes, more resistant to heat!
Experts advise growing so-called “robust” varieties. This means that they can ensure a correct yield, even with harsher growing conditions (mildew, drought…). For fries, you also have to turn to potatoes whose flesh is suitable for cooking in deep fryer. There are several such as the Lady Jane or the Carolus.
Eat fries differently in times of shortage
Whether the size of the tubers varies depending on the water present in the soil, so consider reviewing the size of the fries. Indeed, in most fast food restaurants, the latter measure an average of 9 cm. But if the market only has small potatoes, restaurants and customers will have to adapt.
Most farmers have lost 50% of their crops this year. Also, many are thinking of reviewing their contracts with the major suppliers of industry who buy back their usual production.
“I hope to compensate with a price increase, it is less good for the consumer, but essential at our level. »
On their side, the restaurants who offer fries will no doubt have to adapt in the kitchen. Offering hash browns or shorter fries: these are the main alternatives.
For the rest, the size of these sticks remains a matter of taste. Small and crispy ? Big and fluffy? Customers will also have to review their level of requirement.