Is putting potatoes in the blender taking the juicing trend a step too far? Not according to Swedish brand My Foodie, which is making its UK debut with a range of potato-based smoothies that come in a glass bottle.
Targeting the vegan and flexitarian markets, the drinks are made with a mix of potato, rapeseed oil, apple juice and berries. Free from gluten, dairy and nuts, consumers have a choice of three variants: blueberry, raspberry and sea buckthorn.
My Foodie claims to be the first in the world to combine potatoes with rapeseed oil, with the smoothies originally launching in Europe in August 2018, although a Swiss outfit called A Vogel sells a potato juice enhanced with fennel. It has patented the method of combining potatoes and oil, a process it equates with mixing oil and water.
But it’s not just a drink, with the brand described its “remarkably viscous and filling liquid,” which retails at £3 per bottle, as akin to a snack.
“In typically Scandinavian style, My Foodies are a delicious and nutritious smorgasbord of ingredients and flavours,” said Thomas Olander, co-founder and CEO of My Foodie’s owner, Veg of Lund.
“Given their consistency, they’re more a ‘drinkable snack’ than a drink. Perfect for these increasingly flexitarian times, they contain half your daily Omega 3 needs, are free-from anything that’s not needed and feature a remarkably underused superfood, the humble potato.”
Wholesalers like The Health Store, Marigolds and Galleria by GFG will have the range available for convenience retailers.
But is it actually healthy?
While potatoes aren’t really going to capture the ‘superfood’ crowd, the drinks provide 8.3g of sugar per 100g and contain just 102 calories, with the potato offering more potassium than a banana, according to My Foodie.
But nutritionist Dr Laura Wyness notes that while potatoes are a nutritious food in terms of fibre, vitamin C and potassium, this drink only contains 3% potato. And the rapeseed oil content isn’t too hot either.
“Rapeseed oil does indeed have a healthy proportion of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats including omega-3 fatty acids. This juice product, which includes 6% rapeseed oil, claims to be rich in omega-3… However, there are better ways to get omega-3 into your diet without having to drink it along with so much sugar,” she explains.
“The blueberry juice contains 22g of sugars. As with many fruit juices it comes in a 250ml bottle, which some consumers may perceive to be one portion. The government advice is to limit fruit juice consumption to a maximum of 150ml a day due to the high free sugars content.”
While the internet is saturated with articles about the alleged benefits of drinking potato juice, the idea may be a bit half-baked.