This month, a new variety of potato is launching in supermarkets. Its grower, Branston, is asking shoppers to decide whether they would like to see ‘Violet Queen’ become a British mainstream potato.
The new bright purple variety will be sold in selected Tesco stores across the UK for a limited time only and has been carefully developed for its exciting colour and rich texture whilst maintaining its highly pigmented purple hue once cooked.
The Violet Queen will be available from mid-March to mid-April and is the first specialist potato to be included in the new Seasonal Spuds’ ‘Discovery Pack’ concept, which offers daring foodies the opportunity to try unusual varieties and give their opinions directly to the grower.
Jackie Baker, communications manager at Branston, told aafarmer.co.uk: “There are more than 3,000 different varieties of potatoes in the world and UK growers tend to focus on just a few popular ones. Our potato experts try to unearth more interesting and unusual spuds for people to try however, unlike your everyday potatoes, they’re only grown in limited amounts."
"We want to give consumers the opportunity to try Violet Queen and tell us what they think. They can do this on our website and social media by tagging Seasonal Spuds and using our dedicated hashtags. Our first small crop of Violet Queen potatoes and our Discovery Pack concept is the perfect way for us to define their popularity and decide whether to grow even more.”
The Violet Queen is particularly rich in polyphenol antioxidants called anthocyanins – the same type of antioxidant found in blueberries and blackberries. *Polyphenols are thought to limit the spread of free radicals in the body, slow cellular ageing and reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer. They have up to ten times the antioxidant effect of vitamins C and E and Violet Queen potatoes contain 143mg of anthocyanins per 100g of fresh product.