The Ministry of Agriculture of Russia responded to the Vkusno i Tochka restaurant chain. She previously stated that she was removing french fries and country potatoes from the menu of some restaurants. Representatives of the network explained this by the fact that “2021 in Russia has become a lean year for potato varieties, which are used for the production of french fries in the enterprises of the network.”
However, the Ministry of Agriculture, headed by the son of Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev, Dmitry Patrushev, did not agree with this statement. The agency stated that Russia is fully provided with potatoes and released a response on its Telegram channel under the heading "There are potatoes - that's it":
“The Russian market is fully provided with potatoes, including processed ones. In addition, the products of the new crop are already arriving, which eliminates the possibility of a shortage. According to the Potato Union, there is currently no need to import french fries. <...> The Ministry of Agriculture of Russia expects an increase in the gross harvest of potatoes this year in the organized sector. This will fully satisfy domestic needs, including processing enterprises.”
Alexei Krasilnikov, executive director of the Potato Union, told The Insider that the lack of potatoes in Vkusno i Tochka restaurants may be due to the fact that the new owners were unable to build logistics and negotiate with market participants to provide their enterprises with raw materials. According to him, last year the harvest was indeed smaller, but it was enough for processing.