Franklin Country – from garden to table………

Our region of Franklin, is a garden paradise – the area is surrounded with market gardens which supply fresh produce to all manner of places.
Balle Bros chips

Franklin market gardensSome of our very own market gardeners are taking things a step further in the potato growing industry by growing specific potatoes for potato chips. The newcomers to the chip market, the Balle family, planted their first crop last week.
Eamon and Tim Balle, from Chip off the old Block potato chips say it is a real buzz seeing the family’s new product on the shelves of the supermarkets.
These guys are third generation vegetable growers and potato growing is “in the blood”.
The focus on their chips is to keep things as natural as possible, and so far the flavours that they are producing include sea salt, smoked paprika and sea salt with cracked pepper.

One of our local papers has the story.

The Balle family have really done their homework and over the generations have certainly come to know their stuff. There is information on the vegetables that they grow on their site, and even the humble red onion should not be overlooked for health benefits!
…and did you know “Potatoes are surprisingly rich in vitamin C. They help the body absorb minerals when eaten with other iron-rich foods. Potatoes are also excellent for satisfying hungry appetites, the sugar carbohydrates releasing energy gradually, allowing you to go longer between meals.”

One of our other local growers, Allan Fong, has also been in the news over time with his fresh take on cooking with some of the Asian greens that he grows. Allan has been on telly with Al Brown ( I may have already mentioned that in a previous blog!) and also appeared in a Country Calender episode a few years back.

So – not only can you come check out WHERE your food is grown, you can ALSO head to one of the cafes and restaurants. or even the local supermarkets, and try the local produce 🙂
We had a story about a lady who came from France, who was visiting Pukekohe especially to find out where the potatoes were grown that she had tried in one of the restaurants overseas!! Now THAT is getting international recognition of our wee patch!!

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