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Vegetable growing

There’s salt and marshes

salts. Wine and vineyards. Oysters and the oyster farm. In addition to salt, wine and oyster farming, another activity is carried out with the greatest respect for tradition on the Ile de Ré: market gardening.

Focus on the early potato from the Ile de Ré, a local product with the same status as Régis Léau’s baudets du Poitou.

An AOC potato, a first in France

No, the Rétais aren’t the only ones to say so. The early potato from their corner of paradise in the Charente archipelago is unique and inimitable. In fact, it’s so unique that, in 1998, it became the very first fresh product to be awarded an AOC.

What’s so different about it? A modest size, a melt-in-the-mouth texture, a slightly sweet taste and, above all, a nutty flavor that sets it apart from all other potatoes.

In 1993, a cooperative was set up to bring together the 30 growers and help them produce 2,500 tonnes of potatoes a year.

Itinerary of a high-quality product

The Ile de Ré pot ato is grown on a defined terroir to guarantee its authenticity. In autumn and winter, the plants “hibernate” in the germarium for 4 weeks. In January, growers carefully prepare the soil in which the plants will grow. From April onwards, they check their maturity.

All potatoes are harvested before July 31st, early in the morning, using modern machines that do not damage the tubers. They are then washed and graded before being packaged.