Fries are a popular snack in Belgium. INQUIRER.net Stock Photo

With the food sector hit during the coronavirus crisis, Belgians are being called to eat more fries to help the potato industry.

Farmers might see 750,000 tonnes of potato crops go to waste as demand has fallen with restaurants closed, events canceled and families at home, the Brussels Times reported on April 23.

Belgapom, the potato industry association in the country, is looking to avoid food waste by appealing to consumers.

“Let us all eat French fries twice instead of once a week,” Romain Cools, secretary-general of Belgapom, was quoted as saying by the Telegraph on April 24.

Frites or French fries—thick-cut and double-fried potatoes—are a popular snack typically sold in stands in the country. Despite takeout options, the lockdown has seen a dip in sales among these stands as people stay home.

The surplus is mainly seen in the frozen potato sector, Belgapom told CNBC yesterday, April 28. With demand down for frozen potatoes, freezer capacity is becoming more limited to keep inventory.

“We’re working with supermarkets to see whether we can launch a campaign asking Belgians to do something for the sector by eating fries—especially frozen fries—twice a week during the coronavirus crisis,” Cools explained. “What we are trying to do is to avoid food waste, because every lost potato is a loss.”

To curb food waste, Brussels Times reported that Belgapom will provide 25 tonnes of potatoes each week to food banks until the end of May. Niña V. Guno /ra

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