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The historic spud is grower Stephen Christie, David Morrow and Michael McKilliop from Glens of Antrim Potatoes Photo by: FarmingLife

Pre-famine potato "Irish Lumper" cultivated again for first time since 1840s

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The historic spud is grower Stephen Christie, David Morrow and Michael McKilliop from Glens of Antrim Potatoes Photo by: FarmingLife

Glens of Antrim Potatoes is bringing a historically Irish potato back to life by commercially cultivating the Irish Lumper potato for the first time since the Famine during 1840s Ireland.

Farming Life reports that the Irish Lumper was re-introduced and tested earlier this month at the Delicious Ireland consumer event at the famous foodhall in Selfridges, London.

The Irish Lumper was able to be grown again by Glens of Antrim Potatoes, which used a special  handful of rare seedlings to restart the crop. Along with the rare seedlings, a specialist grower in Co Limavady was used in order to achieve a product which retained the distinctive “knobbly” shape and heritage of the Lumper but also excelled in taste and nutrition.

Michael McKilliop from Glens of Antrim Potatoes said the company was blown away by the positive feedback.

“We’ve been working for five years to produce a crop of Irish Lumpers which told the story of the potato’s heritage whilst meeting our high standards, and we were delighted with this first commercial crop. The feedback from customers has been amazing so far, we will definitely be introducing the Irish Lumper into our product range later in the year.”

“We’re committed to helping consumers appreciate that there is so much more to the potato than its ‘humble spud’ image,” added McKilliop. “The re-birth of the Irish Lumper is a perfect example and we hope customers near and far will enjoy the history, heritage and flavour of this great potato variety.”

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