Monday, October 08, 2007

Good things come in small packages...

and, at high prices:

Baby Organic Parisienne carrots will sell for £1.45 for a 300g punnet, which equates to a hefty £4.83 a kilo.

That makes them more than four times the price charged for supermarket organic carrots, which sell for £1.11 per kilo.

While they are well over seven times the cost of ordinary supermarket loose carrots, which are just 64p per kilo.

However, the producers insist this latest incarnation of the carrot is worth the higher price, for it has some key advantages over its ordinary cousins.

They are particularly sweet-tasting and the skin is so thin and soft that they do not need to be either peeled or chopped.

While they have a stronger flavour than other types, which means they taste nice eaten raw, with dips, sliced into rounds or fried into carrot crisps.

The carrots will be sold by Marks & Spencer which believes the fun shape - they are about the size of a 50p piece - will also mean they appeal to children for school lunchboxes.

Parisienne Carrots were originally grown in window boxes in Paris in the early 1900s so that they could be picked as they were needed.

Today they are sold in French farmers' markets and are much sought after by gourmet chefs because of their superior flavour. They are picked early which partly accounts for their tiny size.

Organic carrot sales have soared in the last year and are now the biggest selling organic vegetable. Sales are up by almost 10per cent in the last 12 months, according to retail analysts TNS.

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