Originally from the Andes, the potato is now commonly used throughout the world and is the plant with the largest number of wild and cultivated varieties (although all cultivated species belong to the Solanum Tuberosum). Archeological excavations have revealed that the potato already existed 13,000 years ago in parts of South America, including Chile, and 8,000 years ago in Peru, where they were given nicknames such as Kuntur Warmi, meaning 'like a woman with the colour of the condor' and Quwi Sullu, an unborn guinea pig.
The potato is rich in nutrients, contains no fat and has half the number of calories compared to rice and pasta. Consisting of 80% water, the potato contains essential minerals, vitamins and fibres - including potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, iron and calcium - as well as starch in the form of complex carbohydrates. Potatoes also contain vitamin B and a large amount of vitamin C, comparable with most types of fruit, meaning it fits perfectly into a healthy lifestyle.
The potato is the most suitable plant to continue feeding the growing world population, not only because it is easy to grow, but also because the yields have more nutritional value per hectare and require less water than corn or rice.