Maris Piper organic

Organic Maris Piper potatoes have hit UK supermarket shelves for the first time.

The potatoes, supplied by the Produce World Group under its Nature’s Premium brand, went on sale across 40 Waitrose stores last week.

Waitrose buyer Gemma Hodgson said the retailer was “particularly excited” to be able to offer an organic variety of Maris Piper, a favourite among shoppers because they can be mashed, baked, chipped or roasted.

“Our growers have been working hard to make an organic crop a reality as Maris Pipers are a particularly tricky variety to produce,” she said.

Produce World’s agronomy manger Simon Faulkner said Maris Pipers are a challenge to grow organically because they are particularly prone to potato blight, which is difficult to control without fungicides.

The company worked with one of its expert grower partners at AE Lenton to produce the organic variety.

“Thankfully this season there has been low blight pressure,” said Faulkner. “At the same time we have had to plan carefully to get just the right location that provides good fertility and availability of water, while reducing the risk of blight. This means avoiding growing our organic Maris Piper in close proximity to other potatoes.”