UK Comber early potatoes have been granted protected geographical indication(PGI) status under European law.
The potatoes are prized for their distinctive earthy, nutty flavour and characteristic soft smooth skin.
The granting of PGI status means the new season Comber potato joins an elite group of high quality European products, including Parma ham, Champagne wine and Stilton cheese, reported the BBC.
PGI status recognises the regional importance and distinctive characteristics of the Comber spud and means that only new season potatoes harvested from the fields of Comber and the surrounding area can be marketed as new season Comber earlies.
PGI legislation came into force in 1993 and provides for a system for the protection of food names on a geographical or traditional recipe basis.
The scheme highlights regional and traditional foods whose authenticity and origin can be guaranteed.
Under this system a named food or drink registered at a European level will be given legal protection against imitation throughout the EU.