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Potatoes: shoots and green areas: When is there a health risk?


Can potatoes still be eaten after they have sprouted?
When the first sprouts of potatoes grow, they should no longer be eaten. If the potatoes have green spots, they should also be disposed of. But is that really true? The Bavarian Consumer Center answers the question of whether you can still eat potatoes or whether this is a health hazard.

Before table potatoes are transported to the supermarket, they are mostly stored in fully air-conditioned warehouses. At temperatures between seven and ten degrees Celsius, the quality of the potatoes is largely preserved and germination is prevented.

In “normal household storage” between 12 to 14 ° C or warmer potatoes germinate. This process begins in the supermarket.

At the beginning of germination, when the length of the germ is about 1 cm, the solanine content in the tuber changes only slightly. Strongly budded tubers with long germs (over 10 cm in length) have not only increased amounts of solanine, but also significant losses in ingredients such as vitamins, minerals and protein. For these reasons, these tubers are no longer suitable for consumption. The same also applies to bulbs that are very green and have been exposed to too much light. Consumers should then dispose of this better.

Solanine is a slightly bitter-tasting substance that is formed in some nightshade plants such as potatoes and tomatoes. Solanine occurs in unripe potatoes or green-colored potatoes as well as in the area of ​​germs. It can also be found in the skins of the potato tuber, since the plant forms solanine naturally as a defense against feeding damage.

Therefore the correct storage and preparation are very important:
Store potatoes as cool as possible (below 15 ° C), dry and dark. Below 4 ° C, however, the starch contained is converted into sugar and the potatoes taste sweet.

Potatoes should not be kept in a foil pouch. This can lead to the formation of moisture and thus mold. If there is no cool storage room, it makes sense to buy smaller quantities of potatoes that can be used up quickly. (sb)

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