May 03, 2023
The Sicilian new potato season started a few weeks ago. Davide Prietto Batturi's company from Syracuse is among the businesses that specialize in this product. The area is known as "Terre Rosse" (i.e. Red Land), named after the red color of its soil, which is very fertile and well-known all over Europe.
"Unlike many other potatoes, our new potatoes boast special organoleptic properties. The peel is thin and the flesh is yellow, plus the flavor is sweet. They are suitable for immediate consumption and have a very delicate flavor, nothing to do with the stored produce that undergoes anti-budding treatments."
"The crops generally cover 25 hectares, producing 50 tons a year on average. This year, unfortunately, things are different as we suffered the heat, frost, a flood and hailstorms. This means yields have halved, as we will not be able to harvest more than 25 tons per hectare."
"This of course will mean high prices. In fact our potatoes currently sell at EUR 0.70/kg (USD and demand is very high. These are production prices, i.e. of produce that is harvested in crates and transferred into big bags to be shipped in northern Italy, where it is processed and re-packaged to be distributed to Italian retail channels."
"As the produce is very demanded and well-sorted, we are not particularly affected by competition. Our produce mainly overlaps with new potatoes from Puglia and partly with those from Tunisia and Egypt."
Azienda agricola Caputo Srl, which is owned by Proietto Batturi, also grows fennel and leaf vegetables (mainly lettuce and Iceberg lettuce) on 40 hectares in total.
Potatoes from Terre Rosse