The Jersey Royal is unique, since in 1997, it was awarded with a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO), similar to that of the Champagne region, meaning it can only be grown in Jersey.
Jersey Royals have a distinctive nutty flavour, making them the most sought-after new potato. Their firm texture makes them ideal for salads.
Our Jersey Royals are also washed and packed on the island, to ensure they reach you as fresh as possible. Our group of dedicated Jersey farmers grow almost 6,000 vergees of these potatoes. Many of the farmers are fourth or fifth generations and still use some of the most traditional methods of farming such as using beach gathered seaweed, known as Vraic, as a natural fertiliser on the field.
History of the Jersey Royal
The birth of the world famous Jersey Royal can be traced back to 1878 when many different varieties were being been grown on the island. A local farmer, Hugh de la Haye, found two enormous potatoes displayed on the counter in a local store, which he bought and showed to his friends. One of them had 15 of the ‘eyes’ from which new plants sprout, so they cut the potato into sixteen pieces that they planted on a ‘côtil’ above Bellozanne valley.
The following spring, they produced a large and early crop. This produced a crop of round potatoes, although one plant produced nothing but unique kidney shaped potatoes. This was the beginning of the truly distinguished Jersey Royal potato. Over the coming years it was specially nurtured and developed to produce the later varieties of Jersey Royals which now account for almost half of all Jersey’s agricultural income.
Hugh de la Haye was later honoured by islanders at a formal gathering with a testimonial and a purse of gold sovereigns.