A new study carried out by Oxfam, the international charity, has found that the potato is the most popular food stuff in Ireland. Ireland bucks the trend - with pasta being the most popular food stuff in most of the rest of the world.

The survey found that Ireland consumes the lowest amount of pasta internationally out of the 47 countries involved.

Data from the Association of Pasta Manufacturers of the European Union (UNAFPA)shows that on average and Irish person eats about one kilogram of pasta every year. However in Italy the average person eats 28 kilograms per year. In the US people eat an average of nine kilograms.

In Ireland the humble spud remains the number one carbohydrate. In fact the Irish Universities Nutrition Alliance found that potato is a main part of the Irish diet. The potato is eaten by over 93 percent of the adult population regardless of age or gender.

Lecturer in human nutrition at Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), Daniel McCarthy, told the Irish Independent our love affair with the potato is due to our “cultural legacy” from our ancestors diets.

"There has been evolving trends in the diets of Irish people in the last 20 years, but it's clear to see the potato is still the most popular food in Ireland…The majority of dinners cooked each night in Ireland are potato-based, but I think in the next 10 years or so we will see more and more people varying their diets for one reason or another."

The makers of Dolmio, a pasta sauce in Ireland, claims that these figures are eschew. A spokesperson for the sauce said “A recent piece of market research we carried out showed that three out of the top 10 hot meals which people eat are pasta-based -- that's spaghetti Bolognese, lasagne and other pasta meals.”

What is certain is that western tastes are spreading throughout the world. In the Oxfam survey 16,000 people from 17 countries were asked about their tastes in food. For nine percent pasta was their top choice, for six percent meat, for five percent rice, for another five percent chicken, for four percent fish, for three percent vegetables followed by Chinese food (2pc), Italian food (2pc) and Mexican food (2pc).

Originally published in 2011.