Following a successful breeder audit and testing by the Label Commission, we are pleased to announce that we are able to recognize Ellenberg’s Kartoffelvielfalt from Barum, Germany, as a bioverita breeder. At the same time, 5 potato varieties from Ellenberg’s Kartoffelvielfalt were approved for bioverita certification: Blaue Anneliese, Heidemarie, Heiderot, Rote Emmalie and Violetta.
“Nature is almost perfect and stunningly beautiful, we just have to use it properly.” Quote by Karsten Ellenberg
The origins of Karsten Ellenberg’s work as a potato grower go back to 1995. Karsten was worried about looming dependence on the big breeders’ and therefore approached the Gatersleben gene bank to investigate their old cultivars. The first ten old potato varieties consisted of a few tubers each which were given to him and sowed into the soil on his farm. At first the neighbors thought he was crazy but the variety of shape, color and taste was amazing. Over the years, Karsten Ellenberg’s breeding work has steadily grown in importance and in 2012 the first varieties were officially approved by the Federal Plant Variety Office. Selection for taste and wholesomeness starts during development, which can last up to ten years. In addition the varieties should be resistant to diseases and pests.
Breeding used wild potato species, historical and modern potato varieties and the result is a colorful diversity of varieties. Breeding used organic methods right from the start and in ways which conserve natural resources. By producing high-quality, certified seedlings of a range of varieties, they are also making an important contribution to future-proofing and the preservation of the biodiversity of plant cultivars.