Buying and storing potatoes
- Ask your supplier what varieties are available and in season. Look for the New Zealand Gap logo.
- Order the right variety for the cooking purpose.
- Order the amount required and in good time to ensure good stock rotation.
- Rotate stock every few days.
Storing and handling potatoes
- Always keep potatoes in a dry, frost-free place with good ventilation.
- Store potatoes between 5-10°C. Use a thermometer to ensure storage area is at the right temperature.
- Keep potatoes away from strong smelling foodstuffs or chemicals.
- Clean store areas regularly.
- Avoid storing potatoes in strong light – natural or artificial – as they will turn green.
- Keep potato stacks low (no more than 6 bags high) to avoid squashing.
- Do not handle potatoes more often than is absolutely necessary as they bruise easily.
- Do not use potatoes if they feel damp in the bag.
What causes greening?
- When potatoes are exposed to light they can develop a green colour resulting in chlorophyll formation in the surface layers. Associated with this is the formation of a toxic alkaloid, solanine.
- The amount of green pigment depends on the intensity of the light, length of exposure and age of potato.
- New potatoes are particularly susceptible to greening.
- If potatoes are purchased with a lot of greening return them to the supplier.
- If there are small amounts of greening cut the green off and use the potato normally.
- Some varieties have quite a yellow flesh so don’t confuse this with greening.