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French potatoes : Increase in production, stable demand

According to a press release from the UNPT, the ware potato offer is expected to increase compared to last year thanks to a 5.1% increase in acreage following the 5.3% increase last year. 

Yield is up compared to last year and is expected to be average to good. The average yield will be 4.3% above the five year average but slightly below the ten year average (-2.2%). 

As long as there are no unexpected complications with the weather, the UNPT expected French ware potato production to reach between 5.8-6.2 million tons this year.

Potato consumption in France has decreased by -6.4% over the last season. Potatoes destined to other European countries at export has also decreased. Early potatoes were the first to suffer, the UNPT explains that 2017 was very difficult for them due to a decrease in consumption, increase in imports and competition from old stocks. 

However, industrial demand has strongly increased over the last few years in France and Europe, notably compared to 2014 (last year of overproduction). According to the UNPT, the increase in volume destined for factories in other European countries allowed for French potato exports to remain stable. 

The syndicate reminds professionals that with the competitive prices, export opportunities should open up. They reassure that for 2017-2018 professionals should not be alarmed or defeated despite the current situation. 

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