Yams grown in New Zealand originate from the South American Andes where they are known as oca.

The sweet tubers are small, often about the size of a thumb, are pink-orange in colour and have a slightly shiny and ribbed surface. Other sweeter, slightly smaller varieties, coloured yellow, apricot and golden are available.

New Zealand yams are different from the tropical yams grown in other cultures. In America, and therefore in American recipe books, the vegetables known as ‘yams’ are in fact sweet potatoes similar to Beauregard kumara.

What to look for

Firm yams with a bright colour and no blemishes.


April, May, June, July, August, September, October.


Refrigerate in plastic bags.

How to prepare

Yams do not need to be peeled. Scrub if necessary and remove any blemishes.

Ways to eat

Yams are eaten cooked and in this form the carotenoids are more available. Boiling or steaming minimises their oxalate levels. Serve whole or mashed. Use sliced in stir fries. The natural sweetness of yams is enhanced with ginger, orange or sweet and sour sauces.

Cooking Methods

Bake, braise, boil, steam, microwave, roast, stir fry, stew.


Nutrition Information        
Servings per package:  
Servng Size: 6 YAMS-120g  
  Average Quantity % Daily Intake per serve Average Quantity  
per serving per 100 g  
Energy (kJ/Cal) 289/69 3% 241/58  
Protein (g) 1.4 3% 1.1  
Fat, total (g) 0.2 0% 0.2  
 - saturated (g) 0.04 0% 0.03  
Available carbohydrate (g) 14.5 5% 12.1  
 - sugars (g) 5.2 6% 4.3  
Dietary Fibre (g) 1.3 4% 1.1  
Sodium (mg) 0 0% 0  
Folate (µg) 50 25% RDI* 42 A good source of Folate
Vitamin A Equiv. (µg) 101 13% RDI* 84 A source of Vitamin A
Vitamin B6 (mg) 0.25 16% RDI* 0.21 A source of Vitamin B6
Potassium (mg) 420   350 Contains Potassium
Niacin (mg) 0.5 5% RDI* 0.4  
Riboflavin (mg) 0.14 8% RDI* 0.12  
Thiamin (mg) 0.07 7% RDI* 0.06  
Vitamin C (mg) 1 2% RDI* 1  
Vitamin E (mg) 0.0 0% RDI* 0.0  
Calcium (mg) 4 1% RDI* 3  
Iron (mg) 0.4 3% RDI* 0.3  
Selenium (µg) 0.0 0% RDI* 0.0  
Zinc (mg) 0.3 2% RDI* 0.2  
Percentage Daily Intakes are based on an average adult diet of 8700 kJ   
Your daily Intakes may be higher or lower depending on your energy needs.   
 *Recommended Dietary Intake (Average Adult)  
Source: FOODfiles 2016        


Pre-pack in plastic bags. Customers may not know how to use yams or earth gems, so use the QR code on labels.

Store at 0-2ºC with a relative humidity of 90-100%.

Purchase yams and earth gems with the New Zealand GAP logo.


In their native South America and have only been commercially available in New Zealand since 2003. The brightly coloured tubers range from yellow to magenta, pink, and even candy striped. They are very small in size, about 2-3 cm in diameter. Their waxy skins are shiny and colourful and is thin and soft and needs no peeling. The white to lemon-yellow flesh has a smooth, silky texture with a nutty taste, similar to beetroot.

Ulluco have a crisp texture, which remains even when cooked. They can be boiled, steamed, microwaved or baked. They hold their colour after cooking and look attractive on the plate.


Swede with lemon
Swede with lemon

This slightly sweet lemon sauce can be used on other vegetables such as parsnips, carrots, kūmara, turnips, pumpkin or yams. View Recipe

Citrus glazed carrots
Citrus glazed carrots

This glaze is fantastic on carrots and many other vegetables such as, parsnips, swedes, kūmara, turnips, pumpkin or yams. View Recipe

View more Recipes


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