The home of the Northern Irish potato is undoubtedly Comber, famed for its new season potatoes. The harvest of Spring Comber potatoes is such an important event in the Northern Ireland food calendar that it is even reported in the local press. The reason for this reputation and all this excitement is the geographic location of Comber, sheltered by the Mournes and the Ards Peninsula and protected from frosts by Strangford Lough. As a result of this unique micro climate, the potatoes here are harvested earlier than in other regions, in May or June.
New Season Comber Potatoes and Comber Earlies now carry a special logo, highlighting their 'Protected Geographical Indication' status under European law.
From now on, only new season potatoes harvested from the fields of Comber and the surrounding area can carry the distinctive yellow and blue European logo and be marketed as New Season Comber Potatoes or Comber Earlies.
Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status recognises the importance of regional and traditional foods whose authenticity and origin can be guaranteed, and the Comber potato's designation has been a real boost, according to Councillor Mervyn Oswald, former Mayor:
"New season Comber potatoes and Comber Earlies are already renowned for their distinctive taste, but gaining the right to carry the official PGI logo provides a unique marketing opportunity for our growers both locally and internationally, while also protecting against imitation. I have no doubt that consumers will become more aware of what PGI status means as they see the logo on bags of Comber spuds and that in itself will encourage an interest in buying local food which is good news for our economy
NB. This map is based on the postcode and so may not reflect the exact location.
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