The Humble Potatoe

Did you know there are literally thousands of different varieties of potatoes grown around the world. In the UK around 80 varieties are grown commercially.

Potatoes are seasonal and are usually harvested, depending on the variety and where in the country they are grown.  Potatoes are often categorised according to their season. For example: Varieties such as Rocket or Maris Bard are described as ‘earlies’ or ‘new potatoes’ as they are planted in the winter, ready for harvesting in the spring or early summer. Their skins are not firm and ‘set’ and are sometimes referred to as ‘fluffy’.

Varieties such as King Edward or Maris Piper (mostly used for Chips) are harvested in late summer or early autumn when their skins are firm and set and are known as ‘maincrop’. The majority of potatoes sold in the UK are maincrop potatoes; they are usually available from September to May.

The texture of potatoes varies considerably. A potato may be described as having a waxy or floury texture and there is a scale of 1 – 10 on which varieties are placed. Where potatoes sit on the scale will depend on the amount of dry matter in the potato. For example a floury potato will have a much higher dry matter than a waxy potato. Our Maris Pipers are placed on at 5.

Due to the potato season, it means shops like ours have fresh potatoes for 7 – 8 months and the rest of the year they are from cold stores. And because we support British farmers we only use the finest Maris Piper potatoes. During peak season the texture of the potatoes changes so much. Like now, the 2012 period in Lincolnshire has been very dry, this is reflecting in the potatoes as they are drier some weeks and fluffier others. And because we get 3 delivery’s a week we can promise, you are getting the finest spuds on in the market.

However don’t be alarmed if the odd potato is dark or discoloured after all they are naturally grown in the ground, we care about our environment we don’t agree using frozen pre prepared chips which have been treated with preventives, they may look good but they aren’t fresh! And so much potato is wasted on so little chips!

It takes over an hour of hard work every morning to peel, and chips our potatoes, a lot of hard work goes into that little Chip….just remember us working hard the next time you take a bite!