National Potato Day: Celebrate Ireland’s favourite vegetable

Bord Bia, in conjunction with the Irish Potato Federation and the Irish Farmer’s Association, is delighted to welcome the return of National Potato Day today Friday, October 3.

Much-loved by Irish families for generations, National Potato Day celebrates a reliable favourite that not only tastes delicious and is incredibly versatile, but also provides a naturally healthy option for meal times.

Ireland’s love of the potato remains strong, with 96.6% of all Irish households buying potatoes in 2014 – that’s 1.6 million households! And it’s not just traditional potato dishes that are finding favour with the public, www.potato.ie has just released the nation’s ‘Magnificent Seven’, a list of the seven most downloaded potato dishes from the site*. Much-loved traditional potato recipes enjoyed by generations of Irish people are featured alongside easy-to-prepare contemporary and international dishes, including Lebanese spiced potatoes and potato and onion pakora’s.

Speaking at the launch of National Potato Day, Lorcan Bourke of Bord Bia said, “We know that Irish people love the potato, and while many people continue to enjoy traditional potato based meals, we are seeing increased interest in more contemporary and adventurous ways of cooking potatoes using modern ingredients and internationally influenced recipes. Many people do not realize that potatoes are also a very healthy option, that they are packed with natural goodness whilst also being virtually fat free!”

Also speaking at the launch was Pádraic Óg Gallagher, President of the Restaurants Association of Ireland and Proprietor/Executive Chef of Gallagher’s Boxty House, who has been creating delicious potato recipes for over 26 years, “We are delighted to be involved in National Potato Day once again this year. The potato is the star of our menu and we even grow some of our own potatoes on site and serve them in the restaurant daily. The potato is such a great natural food for creating quick and easy recipes and I would encourage everyone to check out www.potato.ie for inspiration and to try one of ‘The Magnificent Seven’ recipes in celebration of National Potato Day.”

10 Fun and Interesting Potato Facts:

  1. 1580 – the year potatoes were introduced to Ireland
  2. China is the number 1 potato producing country in the world
  3. The potato was the first vegetable grown in space in 1995
  4. 2008 was the UN International Year of the Potato
  5. The average annual potato consumption in Ireland is 85kg per person – compared to just 33kg per person per annum worldwide!
  6. Ireland produced 382,000 tonnes of potatoes in 2013
  7. The Rooster is the most planted main crop potato variety, accounting for 60% of all plantings and retail sales
  8. There are now 540 potato growers in Ireland
  9. 1801 – the year French fries were first served in the USA
  10. 1853 – the year the potato crisp was invented

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