A rare and unique gourmet variety of avocado is to be exclusively launched by Tesco across the UK.

The GEM® avocado which has eye-catching, natural gold flecks on its outer skin offers customers a smoother and creamier taste than regular varieties because it remains on the tree much longer.

It is also slightly sweeter than other varieties and has a thicker skin making it easier to scoop out with a spoon.

The launch should cause a stir for the growing number of UK avocado fans with demand so strong in the last few years that the fruit has even overtaken sales of oranges for the first time ever.

At Tesco, avocado demand is up by more than 30 per cent in the last year alone because of the current interest in healthy eating.

Tesco avocado buyer Andrew Pattison said:

“This outstanding avocado stands out from other varieties because of its rich taste, melt in the mouth texture, smooth creaminess and slight nuttiness.

“But it is also notable for its eye-catching golden lenticels or speckles which appear on the dark skin of the ripe fruit and which make it stand out from other avocado varieties.

“It's not the kind of avocado you will want to mash up and turn into guacamole but rather show off as a special treat at a dinner party as either an exotic entrée or part of the main dish.”

The GEM® will be supplied from a number of countries, but specifically South Africa at the moment.

It is currently farmed by an elite group of licensed growers around the world. The ones Tesco are getting are grown in South African and are hand-picked to ensure the fruit remains in top condition.

Tesco recently sold two other rare varieties of avocado – a mini version called Zilla Eggs and a giant sized one called the Avozilla, which is roughly five times the size of the regular type.