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     Glens of Antrim potatoes
    The Irish Lumper potato has been cultivated once more by County Antrim farmer Michael McKillop who has a keen interest in history.

    The Lumper was popular in the 19th century because it grew happily in very poor soil. So it became very popular with the farmers of Munster and Connacht. But then came the blight.

    It is believed that about one million people in Ireland died in the 1840s after the failure of the potato crop.

    The potato variety Lumper itself all but died out in Ireland, but about six years ago, Mr McKillop who runs Glens of Antrim Potatoes in Cushendall, decided he would like to revive it.

    "I am interested in some of the older varieties of potatoes. I had heard about the Lumper and read in books that it was soapy and tasted bad. But I wanted to taste it to see for myself,"he said.

    "When I was at a show in County Down, a man gave me one and I planted it in the garden, From that one, I grew 28 wee potatoes and I thought they tasted lovely, so I grew them again."

    This year, he has produced enough potatoes to put on the supermarket shelves for two weeks in March. They will be on sale in Marks &Spencer in the run-up to St Patrick's Day on 17 March.

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