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‘A different flavour and not as crispy’ – Brexit ban could change taste of Ireland’s chipper chips forever

Despite being famous for growing potatoes, a lot of our spuds are actually imported- especially by chippers

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The tase of our chipper chips may be affected by Brexit.

The tase of our chipper chips may be affected by Brexit.

The tase of our chipper chips may be affected by Brexit.

Brexit will affect Ireland in many ways, however, many people may be surprised to hear that it might even upset the taste of our chips.

Despite being famous for growing potatoes, a lot of our spuds are actually imported - especially by chippers. In fact, we import around 80,000 tonnes of potatoes a year.

Many chip shops in Ireland import their potatoes from the UK, so a post-Brexit ban on the importation of potatoes from the UK could have a major effect on the taste of their chips.

There could even be a shortage in chipper chips once a trade-deal is passed.

Spuds are imported from the UK for many Irish chippers because how they are grown and the soil type makes them crispier and more suited for frying.

Durk Duggan who works in Leo Burdock's chipper in Christchurch, said they may have to use home-grown potatoes for their chips, but they won’t taste the same.

“People are amazed when they hear we import so much potatoes from abroad,” he told RTÉ Radio One’s Morning Ireland.

“We can get homegrown potatoes but they will be different, they won't be as crispy sadly, the sugar balance won’t be the same.

“It will be a different flavour so we might have to alter the salt and vinegar and what we do with the sauces.

“There could be a shortage, we might have to go with smaller portions, and we might have to go with a different approach.”

Mr Duggan said that the company has been left in the dark over what exactly is going to happen on the importation of UK potatoes.

“At this moment nothing has been clarified, nothing has been signed sealed or delivered, we are anxious around that,” he said.

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Thomas McKeon, head of the Irish Farmers Association (IFA) potato committee said people are always surprised to hear that many of our potatoes are imported from countries as far away as Israel and Egypt.

The farmer sorts and bags rooster potatoes near Kells in Co Meath for local shops.

“When I started here on the farm in the late 80s the country grew twice as much potatoes as we do now,” he said.

“People's perception of potatoes has changed, some see it as a throwback to the famine.”

Mr McKeon added that a ban on the importation of potatoes from the UK could be good for the country and encourage more home-grown potatoes to be used in both businesses and homes.


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