Sponsors & partners
McCain Foods GB - confirmed new principle sponsor of GYOP
McCain Foods GB have become principle sponsors of the Grow Your Own Potatoes project.
The sponsorship will enable GYOP to develop and grow, meaning more schools can get involved and even more children will be getting their hands dirty while making the connection between food and farming.
National variety: Rocket - supplied by Cygnet Potato Breeders
First early maturity producing an attractive uniform sample, very early bulking, and high yielding. Low to medium dry matter. The tubers are round to short oval, medium to large, white smooth skin, with white flesh, and shallow eyes. The plant is short, wide spreading, with a medium number of stems. It has light green matt open leaves.
Cygnet Potato Breeders operate the UK’s largest potato breeding program. It takes around 15 years to breed and test a new potato variety and the program that Cygnet operate has been breeding potatoes since the 1930’s The UK’s biggest variety Maris Piper was produced in 1964. It is based in Scotland and Cambridge and release a new variety on average every two years. Rocket was first released in 1988 and has been grown in the UK every year since then. It is the fastest growing table potato and is used when the crop from the previous season is finished and the new harvest begins.
Cygnet also produce Saxon for main crop table potatoes, Cabaret for chips and French fries and Casablanca which can be used for both fresh and processing. They have recently developed a new variety called Olympus which will be made into crisps
Cygnet sell seed potatoes of its varieties in the UK and to over 20 countries overseas. In total varieties from the Cygnet breeding program are planted on 30,000 Ha in the UK and produce around 1,800,000 tonnes of potatoes each year. That is enough to fill 6,600 lorries.
Variety Athlete - supplied by Agrico UK Ltd
Yellow skinned variety which is firm to cook and has a fresh earthy taste, ideally eaten hot or cold as a new potato. Not only superb to eat, Athlete grows well in the field, and is suitable for both early and second early production. This special variety has demonstrated exceptional resistances to potato borne diseases, and having originally started out as an organic variety it boasts dual blight resistance, requiring very low inputs. It also yields well which makes it a very sustainable crop to grow.
The name Athlete was deliberately chosen through its connotations of healthiness, durability and strength. The timing of its introduction to the potato industry was particularly appropriate as it coincided with the London 2012 Olympic Games, which gave it another point of difference.
T: 01307 840551
Variety Winston - Supplied by Caithness
Winston seed potatoes, another Jack Dunnett variety, have proved to be both a commercial and an exhibition success all in one. Released in 1992 this white skinned variety has been unstoppable on the showbench circuit winning many titles year after year.
Winston produces high yields of smooth shallow eyed tubers that are short-to-oval in shape. Their flesh has a firm texture and a creamy colour, whilst thier very low dry matter would see Winston described as a wet potato.
Winston potatoes have excellent all round disease resistance.
Variety Gemson - supplied by Puffin Produce
Gemson is a second early which was parented by the popular variety Maris Peer. Producing high yields of small, round-oval tubers, this tasty tattie has been proven to grow equally well in grow bags as in the ground.
The tuber boasts a smooth white skin and firm flesh. Particularly delicious steamed or boiled and eaten either hot or cold as a new potato or served with salads. This exceptional new variety has shown very high resistance to common potato diseases. Look out for its bright violet flowers as it grows.
Variety Royal - Supplied by McCain Foods GB
Royal is McCain Foods GB Ltd. highest yielding variety used for producing a number of delicious products including Oven Chips, French Fries and Roasts. Royal has very strong, vigorous foliage but rarely produces flowers. The potatoes can get very large in the field and have a light yellow flesh and high dry matter ideal for chips that are crispy on the outside and perfectly fluffy inside. The variety is resistant to a number of common potato diseases making it easy to grow and require relatively little fertiliser and watering. It has been grown successfully in GB for a number of years and is now the largest area grown for the McCain Factories.
Variety Casablanca - Supplied by E Park & Sons
Casablanca was named after the musical and film as many Cygnet PB varieties are, such as our most recent success Kingsman. There’s around 200 hectares of Casablanca grown in GB, mostly in the early areas such as Ayrshire in Scotland and Comber in Ireland. In these areas there is a preference for the fluffier types of early potato which Casablanca produces. Casablanca is also popular in New Zealand, Belgium and Slovenia.
Contact us: [email protected]
T: 01724 711222
Variety Piccolo Star - Supplied by Branston
From one seed potato you can grow large numbers of little potatoes from this Baby New variety.
We think this variety is a real star because it grows lots of new baby potatoes from each seed potato. If you look after it well – watering and feeding regularly – you could get up to 28 new potatoes from each plant.
Make sure you ‘chit’ the seed potatoes before planting them. Allowing the seed to grow shoots up to 1cm long will help to give them a head start. Be sure to plant them the right way up in the compost, with most of the shoots pointing upwards. They make take about two weeks for the shoots to break through the soil surface. After another six weeks you may find pretty pinky-white flowers at the top of the shoots which by now should be over 40cm tall.
Did you know, Piccolo is the word for small in Italian? This variety produces quite small, dainty potatoes. Minusculo is another Italian word for small, but Minusculo Star doesn’t have quite the same ring to it!
Piccolo Star potatoes are smooth-skinned with a pale golden colour. They have a mild creamy sweet flavour and firm texture when you cook them, so they are perfect just lightly steamed or boiled. You can roast them too – just straight into the roasting tin with a little oil – no need to peel or par-boil. Super-easy, healthy and delicious!
T: 01522 799046
Variety Jazzy- Supplied by Meijer Seed Potatoes
The small potato that packs a big punch! The small waxy potatoes can be cooked in many different ways and are literally bursting with flavour. We at Meijer have been amazed by the enormous yields that Jazzy produces - both in the ground and in potato bags. When planted in bags a minimum of 35 beautiful, bright tubers is normal - but we’ve heard of up to 80 from one plant so please let us know and maybe send a photo too if you beat that! The plants will produce a lot of stems but not many flowers, the more stems there are the more potatoes you will usually find! Jazzy got its name because all of Meijer’s table potato varieties have a musical theme – we also grow other varieties with names such as Melody, Orchestra, Acoustic and Rock. Jazzy crops are sold in shops and markets all over the UK, with some in branded bags where you will see our hat-loving Jazzy character!
Contact us: [email protected]
T: 01263 710602
Variety Belmonda - Supplied by Solana
High yielding and robust ware potato, main crop, cooking type B with excellent storability. Belmonda shows attractive round-oval tubers with a very uniform grading, shallow eyes, beautiful yellow skin and yellow flesh. Resistant to potato wart disease race 1 and nematodes Ro1, 4. Excellent tolerance against bruising, Rhizoctonia, blackleg, Phytophthora, internal rust spot and Yntn. The results under dry conditions are tremendous, especially regarding to second growth.