Natural potato, without preservatives or colorants and with a cooking point and taste similar to that obtained in home kitchens: this is what the Paturpat firm offers to the hospitality sector. A new V-Range potato processing line to respond to the demands of the sector, under the Depatata brand of Udapa
By: Bárbara Aguayo Martínez, agri-food journalist (@BarbaraAguayoM3)
V Gama foods are those foods that have already been prepared, cooked and packaged, and that, therefore, in most cases, are ready to eat. The preparation of these foods is also based on traditional cuisine, but incorporates cutting-edge processes and techniques, such as pasteurization and sterilization at low temperatures to preserve flavor, nutrients and properties. Such are precisely the products offered by Paturpat (a Udapa subsidiary) under its Udapa easy brand: peeled potato, cut into different formats, vacuum packed and steamed, natural and very tasty.
The main objective of these V Gama products is to achieve the texture, taste and smell of a homemade and natural preparation. To do this, they vacuum-pack the products and cook them at low temperatures so that they retain all their nutrients, and do not contain strange smells or flavors. In addition, they do not have preservatives or colorings either.
The main material they use to make their products is potatoes, although in recent months they are focusing on the creation of new references in which they will integrate dressings and more ingredients (such as onion, garlic, carrot, parsley, peas, oil …) with the intention of offering even more elaborate products.
They use ascorbic acid or vitamin C as an antioxidant to prevent the product from browning. Its products have a homogeneity and varietal stability throughout the year, since its main supplier of raw material is Udapa, a cooperative specialized in the marketing and production of fresh consumer potatoes.
Paturpat began its marketing activity at the end of 2016 with the intention of responding to the growing demand in the market for products called convenience. However, the arrival of the pandemic has made this last year very complicated, since the restrictions imposed mainly on the HORECA Channel had a direct impact on its activity, forcing them to look for market alternatives such as merchants and communities, thanks to the which were able to cushion the loss of sales.
In recent years, V Gama producers are looking for a way to offer convenience products, easy to prepare, that are healthy and tasty at the same time. In other words, they aim to achieve a balance between the quality of the product and the ease of its consumption, and that is exactly what the current consumer is looking for.
6 different potato cuts
At the moment in Udapa they have 6 different potato cuts (dice for salad, irregular squares for stews and tapas, bakery potato for garnish, fine stamps for salad, fried sticks and Parisian potato); and for the preparation of 5 of them they use Monalisa, a very versatile variety that can be used to prepare any recipe; while in the case of the fried sticks they use Agria, a special variety for frying.
In turn, it has a high content of potassium and fiber, especially if it is consumed cooked and cold, since the starch is transformed into resistant starch. The advantage of this product is that when it is cooked with steam and in a vacuum, the nutrients are retained much more than if they were cooked in the water directly, since in this case they would go away in the cooking water.
Growth of the V Range in the market
Despite the last year during the most virulent months of the pandemic the cooperative’s activity was almost stopped, the slight recovery experienced by the sector during the summer together with the introduction of the product in the merchants, made the cooperative invoice 5 million euros, marketing 4,500 tons of potato. Of those 4,500 tons, 40% went to large distribution, 30% to the HORECA Channel, and the other 30% went to other sectors.
The V Range is clearly expanding, so Paturpat will continue working to achieve continuous improvement and the development of new products. In addition, with the aim of continuing to grow, they have recently invested more than 3 million euros in the implementation of a second production line that will allow them to increase their manufacturing capacity to meet the growing demand that these products are expected to have.