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Sweet potatoes shine as top choice for award-winning vegetable

The purple sweet potato chosen has been chosen as 'Vegetable of the Year 2024', handpicked by an expert panel in celebration of Veganuary.

The purple sweet potato has been chosen as ‘Vegetable of the Year 2024’, handpicked by an expert panel in celebration of Veganuary – a movement that encourages people worldwide to try a vegan lifestyle during the month of January.

Veganuary developed its Vegetable of the Year concept in keeping with the global campaign theme “Vote for Veggies,” which aims to celebrate vegetables and highlight their relationship with sustainability, creativity, taste, trends, longevity, and other cultural indicators for the coming year.

“Stokes Purple is having a moment, and we couldn’t be happier to see this extraordinary veggie getting the recognition it deserves,” said Alex Jackson, vice president of sales and procurement at Frieda’s.

“In fact, we know that 79 per cent of shoppers are willing to pay more for purple sweet potatoes than they are for traditional varieties.”

A panel of nine food experts in grocery retail, nutrition, and sustainable spaces voted on five key criteria:

  • Growing popularity
  • Versatility
  • Sustainability
  • Health/Nutrition
  • Affordability/accessibility

The panelists, including acclaimed chef and cookbook author Daniela Lais and TikTok influencer Tabitha Brown, have chosen the first-ever Vegetable of the Year based on these criteria and taste.

“Not only is the purple sweet potato versatile and a visual upgrade to any dish you make, but they are also an upgrade in nutrition, high in fibre, vitamins A and B, and packed with antioxidants. Available fresh and frozen, and as an ingredient to amplify dishes, we will continue to see the vibrant purple sweet potato’s popularity grow,” said Holly Adrien, Natural and Organic Strategy & Innovation Manager at Kroger and a Veganuary Vegetable of the Year panelist.

The purple sweet potato’s recent rise to fame is also due to the recent Netflix documentary “Secrets of the Blue Zones,” where this deep violet veggie takes centre stage and has created its reputation as a superfood associated with longevity in life.

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