The tuber was once used by East Tyrolean farmers as pig feed, but soon found its way into the household
Image gallery: Potatoes of East Tyrol
It was in 1775 that "Erdäpfl" - "earth apples" in Austrian dialect (potatoes) - were already being grown in East Tyrol. Today, the region is known for its high-quality Osttiroler Kartoffeln, which thrive thanks to the right combination of soil, cultivation methods, variety selection and climate and then reach the end consumer - you - after special storage. One of the most popular potato varieties is called "Ackersegen", in addition to newer varieties such as Ditta, Agria, Ostara and Erika, which are now available in trade under the acronym Oskar (OSttiroler KARtoffeln) as a protected trademark. Soon the potato replaced lentils, peas and beans in farm households.
Nevertheless, there were always years in which the harvest failed partially or completely - late blight and potato beetles were responsible for this. So more resistant varieties were bred and plant protection improved. A few years ago, the RGO Saatbauzentrum was created, a central, fully air-conditioned storage facility for all potato producers in the village of Dölsach. There are several projects around the East Tyrolean Potato - such as "BioColAlp", where old and new potato varieties were exhibited in the library café in Assling - and of course countless delicacies, such as Bauern-Gröstl, Schlipfkrapfen (filled ravioli, pictured) and potatoes with chanterelles.