23 Aug 2010

New gourmet potato now on the market

6:03 am on 23 August 2010

A new gourmet potato called Purple Heartis now on the market.

It has been bred by Plant & Food Research and it has a smooth deep purple skin with purple and white flesh.

Four growers and a seed producer have joined forces to exclusively grow and market the variety.

Eurogrow Potatoes Ltd says the Purple Heart potato will be marketed as a niche product, mainly for the restaurant trade.

General manager Tony Hendrikse says there has only been a limited amount of seed this year, so most of the potatoes grown have been for promotional purposes.

Branding and packaging have also been developed and the potatoes will be sold in 1.5kg bags in supermarkets.

Mr Hendrikse says this year the growers involved produced just over 50 tonnes of Purple Heart and they hope to at least double that next year.

He says the new potato has three times the level of antioxidants as a standard potato and contains nearly half of the recommended daily intake of iron.