Potatoes continue as one of the most popular vegetables in the produce department. Nearly three-fourths of consumers (74%) were likely to place potatoes in their cart last year, a number down four percentage points from Fresh Trends 2012.

Potatoes were the No. 3 vegetable this year, down from No. 2 last year, and they were the fifth most-purchased commodity overall.

PotatoesThe likelihood of purchase increased according to age for the third consecutive year. Single shoppers and those age 21-39 were least likely to buy spuds this year.

Male consumers were less likely to take home the tubers, at 67%, than female shoppers, at 80%. Midwestern shoppers were among those who comprised the regions most likely to buy potatoes. This year consumers in this region were least likely to buy.

Russet remains king of the potato varieties, followed by reds. However this year saw an increase in people preferring the yellow Yukon gold variety. It moved into third place this year, bumping whites down to fourth.

Meals are built around this root. More than eight in 10 consumers use it as a side dish, nearly two-thirds of consumers (65%) use it as an ingredient in a recipe, and 43% serve potatoes as the main course.

Most shoppers buy conventionally grown potatoes, in fact, they were the No. 2 commodity that consumers bought as conventionally grown (onions were No. 1). Eighteen percent of potato buyers said they bought organically grown potatoes at least some of the time, a number up one percentage points from Fresh Trends 2012.