In conversation with Ms Amanda Ayres, KP Intersnack
Ms Amanda Ayres, KP Intersnack
My chosen path
‘I grew up on an arable farm; my dad was a potato farmer. Working within agriculture was always going to be my chosen path. The potato industry is diverse, and offers lots of challenges and opportunities. I have worked for KP Intersnack for almost three years and before this my career has been within the UK fresh potato sector.
No. 1 snack producer
I am the Senior Category Manager for KP Snacks, which is part of the Intersnack Group. Intersnack is the No. 1 snack producer in Europe and we supply more than 30 countries with our delicious snack brands. KP Snacks is a processor of many of the household crisp brands in the UK. I am responsible for the strategic sourcing of all UK potatoes for the KP brands such as McCoy’s and Brannigans. I am also responsible for sourcing the potato dehydrates for the Intersnack Group in partnership with my colleagues. The potato dehydrates are ingredients in UK brands such as Hula Hoops, Penn State Pretzels, Roysters and Disco’s. Intersnack brands using the potato dehydrates would include Funny Frisch, Pom Bär and RiNGLi.
Positive business development
We contract our supply with a dedicated and professional supply base of direct growers, grower groups and merchant partners. The crisping sector in the UK is heavily contracted annually, but like all markets is steered by supply and demand. This season we have experienced poor potato crop yields due to a cold spring. Quality in store is good so far.
At KP Snacks we have a great team. KP has developed a set of values and behaviors that guide the way we work and conduct our business. They are a catalyst for positive business development and combined make KP a great place to work.
High quality varieties now and for the future
We have a very strategic variety approval process for our KP brands. All varieties must demonstrate a consistently high quality, with a sustainable yield for the farmer. KP approved varieties must offer a high factory yield and produce a consistently high quality crisps for our KP brands. Taurus from HZPC is one of the varieties that we use to produce the McCoy’s and Brannigans crisps.
Our greatest challenge is the changeable UK weather! Seed health, vitality and performance are instrumental to the quality of our final product and key to the yield and profitability of our growers’ crops. We all operate in an industry where margins are tight, specifications are exacting and storage periods are long. HZPC works closely with our supply base to guarantee our crisp quality and overall profitability.
At KP we are continually looking for new varieties to join our approved portfolio to drive the efficiency and quality of our crisp supply chain. HZPC is working with us to identify, trial and develop potential new varieties for the future.’