Life

The heatwave caused a three-week delay in the arrival of Queen potatoes

The heatwave caused a three-week delay in the arrival of Queen potatoes

While many across Ireland were enjoying the sunshine, growers of Queen potatoes were getting worried about their crop.

The hot weather and the drought conditions resulted in difficulties for the Queen spud with one grower saying it "has been really hard work to grow our potato crops this year."

But despite the delay the new crop have finally made it and are as floury as ever and packed with flavour.

Laurence Flynn, from Paud Flynn and Sons from Rush in North County Dublin (a fifth-generation family and Ireland’s largest grower of new season Queens), said despite the growing pains they have a delicious crop.

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"This has been the hottest, driest summer since 1976 resulting in drought conditions," said Mr Flynn.

"It has been really hard work to grow our potato crops this year but thankfully in spite of the challenges we are finally able to harvest and bring them to market.

"Our yield is definitely lower than normal years but their taste is delicious."

Aoife Hearne, a TV dietitian and Bord Bia’s Potato & Fresh Produce Ambassador said: "What is wonderful about potatoes is that they are a totally natural food and what we lift from the ground here today can be immediately cooked and enjoyed.

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Aoife Hearne and Laurence Flynn welcome the harvest of the first new season Queen potato crop of the year,

"We need to dispel the myth that potatoes are fattening or that carbohydrates are bad for you. Consuming potatoes is to be encouraged as we all need good quality carbohydrates for our bodies and particularly for brain function.

"Potatoes are naturally fat and gluten-free, a great source of fibre, Vitamin C and a variety of B vitamins. They also contain three times the amount of potassium found in bananas."

Lorcan Bourke, Fresh Produce & Potato, Manager Bord Bia added that Queen potatoes "are synonymous with the taste of Irish summer."

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"This year new season potato growers throughout Ireland have had to put in valiant efforts to deliver the crop for all of us to enjoy."

If you have missed the Queen spuds this season, Bord Bia says the best way to enjoy them is "to steam or boil them because of their floury texture which means that they almost peel themselves."

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