While it is quite common in northern Europe, the segmentation of the potato market has finally arrived in Italy too. "We want to convey a different message," explains Davide Marangoni, manager at Condifresco, a company commercialising potatoes, garlic, onions, shallot and Italian branch of the French Les Produits du Soleil. Recently, it widened its potato range introducing a new line of potatoes of French origin. 

French and Italian organic specialities.

"The French have a wider variety range. Some of them were available in Italy in the past, but they are no longer cultivated." Among these, there are Cartoccio potatoes, with bigger grades perfect for barbecues as well as the red Chérie, Ratte, Amandine and Vitelotte, i.e. purple potatoes with a more intense flavour.

"It is still a niche market but feedback is positive. What is more, some retailers are also starting to offer alternatives to all-purpose potatoes, so much so that they are becoming private labels."

"The packaging has been studied to make the produce stand out. Each type is packed in poplar crates with a label that explains how they can be best enjoyed."

Some of the French specialities now available in Italy.

In addition to these specialities, Condifresco has also launched a range of organic potatoes made in Italy as well as topinambur. "It comes from France, but a few Italian producers are currently testing it."