Purple Chantenay carrots

Purple Chantenay carrots are hitting UK supermarket shelves for the first time today (16 September).

The carrots, grown by Freshgro and distributed by Produce World, will be available in 120 Waitrose stores nationwide for a six-week period. 

Although purple carrots have been sold in supermarkets before, this is the first UK listing for a purple Chantenay, a spokesman for Produce World claimed. 

“As well as the now well-known sweet Chantenay taste, these carrots have all the health-giving attributes of the more normal orange carrots, plus added benefits from their purple colour,” he added.

Waitrose buyer Patrick Keane said he expected the new veg would prove “very popular” with shoppers.

“In many ways it’s the perfect combination in one product,” he added. “We know people love the sweet taste of Chantenay carrots. The purple colour is something of a novelty and these carrots will look fantastic on the plate, whether in a salad, stew or cooked as one of your vegetables.”

Freshgro controls 90% of Chantenay retail production in the UK, around 20,000 tonnes, which equates to around 10% of total retail carrot sales.

The Nottinghamshire-based co-operative first launched its purple Chantenay variety last September, but sales have so far been limited to wholesalers. It has also developed a white Chantenay carrot for wholesale customers.