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Plantera: 'The fact that there are still varieties that are being trialled is an indication that there certainly is a demand.'

Jeroen van Soesbergen, Plantera, Marknesse: 'The fact that there are still varieties that are being trialled is an indication that there certainly is a demand.'

Every year in the first full week of November, the European potato breeding and seed trading companies operating in the Netherlands present their new varieties and latest breeding results to their global customer base.

Many of these new varieties are intended to be used some day for the production of French Fries. All participants at what we here at PotatoPro call the 'Potato Variety Presentations in the Netherlands' (of doodgewoon rassenpresentaties in het Nederlands) have one or more contenders in this segment.

This raises the question:

“Is there room for all those new French-fry varieties?”
That is the question Aardappelwereld (World Potato Magazine) asked the participating companies last year. And thanks to our brand new partnership agreement with them, we can report you the answers they got in this series of articles!


Plantera, Marknesse


Jeroen van Soesbergen, Plantera, Marknesse:

“It may be funny to put it this way, but the fact that there are still varieties being trialled is an indication that there is a demand for new varieties.”

“The quality standards are changing, other processed products are being added with their own specific requirements.”

“In short, the French-fry world is constantly changing. This alone asks for changes in the range of varieties. Not to mention a factor such as climate change. You ask what our role is in this.”

“Well, not a very big one, but that's not really necessary. For example, we're active in the organic market with table potatoes, where we have the Vitabella as a very successful variety. Coincidentally, we recently discovered that it also makes very tasty chips.”
(Click to enlarge)

The Plantera potato variety Vitabella is a tasteful, firm cooking oval ware potato which is highly suited for organic growing, mainly for the Northwestern European market. The variety is also suitable for homemade fries.

Jeroen van Soesbergen:

“Gerard Bovée, co-owner of the company, has made it his hobby to try out all varieties in all sorts of ways and that's how the Vitabella ended up in the fryer.”

“That was really a surprising and tasty experience, just try them. The underwater weight of the variety is excellent for preparing home fries, the sugar content is not too high and the tubers are long and oval and can also be quite big.”

“If you leave them to grow, you'll quickly have a considerable percentage of 65 to 80 millimetres. And so, with the Vitabella, we suddenly have a dual-purpose variety suitable for both organic and conventional cultivation.”

“In terms of maturity it's early. We're now in the process of testing with French-fry manufacturers that are active in the organic segment. And so you see that there are always opportunities for new French-fry varieties – sometimes or perhaps quite often – discovered by chance.”

Potato Variety Presentation Plantera

Plantera holds its presentations on November 7 and 8 at:
Oosterringweg 7
8316 RW MARKNESSE
The Netherlands
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