The Noirmoutier Potato became one of the newest French geographical indications to obtain protected status on the European-Union level when it was approved July 1, 2020. This official sign of origin and quality confers the product protection on the European scale.
The first crops of potatoes on the island of Noirmoutier date back to the 18th century. The particular characteristics of this production were very quickly recognized on the national level and on the English market. The production of Noirmoutier potatoes today corresponds to a collective organization of producer within a dynamic cooperative system, which has built over an 80 year period the reputation of this product and made it a true element of local heritage.
The Noirmoutier potato is grown on approximately 450 hectares in sandy soils, between the sea and salt marshes, in the mild and sunny climate of the small tidal island of the Atlantic coast of the Vendée département in western France. Its main characteristics such as the earliness of its first productions, its short growing period outdoors, the thinness of its skin and its low dry matter
content, are all intimately linked to the properties of its light and porous soil, which by heating rapidly, assures a rapid development of the potatoes.
The early preparation of the soil in small mounds of dirt, mastery of irrigation system, fine selection of potato flesh that are primarily yellow and adapted to the island context, and pre-seeding the plants are all part of the traditional savoir-faire of the producers, often passed down generation to generation by farmers, who contribute to the quality of their potato products.
Present in markets starting at the beginning of spring, this quality potato benefits from a fine skin that peels easily before cooking. Its low dry matter content and its moderate size render it ideal for browning or steaming, thus revealing its melting texture with a sweet flavor.