European potato market (week 49)

Belgium: Almost no industrial demand on the free market

European physical markets
Prices overview (source: NEPG):

Market report Fiwap / PCA:
Industrial potatoes: There is virtually no industrial demand on the free market. The factories are working almost exclusively on the basis of contracts. The alternative markets (animal feed, potato slices, starch) remain active, with prices comparable to what industry or traders can offer for the surplus volumes.

There is a supply of germinating batches (and in some, rarer cases, some with rotting issues (batches returned very recently)).

Factories are working at between 75 and 85% of their full capacity. The processing of the Inno (especially those from the Netherlands), a typical variety for fast-food restaurants, is often much smaller due to a lack of demand for these types of end products.

Some processors, however, are seeking large volumes of Inno potatoes, especially the batches without problems and damage. Some Belgian factories will actually close their doors between December 18, 2020 and January 4, 2021, which is unprecedented.

Fontane, Challenger, Bintje: prices ranging between 2.00 and 2.50 € / q, with the most common price being 2.00 € / q.
For certain varieties (Bintje, Markies, etc.) and higher quality batches (for industry or fast food restaurants), (considerably) higher prices are sometimes charged.

Fresh market: the activity is generally 'normal' (nothing to do with the massive overactivity caused by the first lockdown period) and sometimes even 'calm'.

Waxy potatoes: due to a reasonably good demand and a limited supply, prices fluctuate between 25 and 35 € / q for the flagship varieties Charlotte and Nicola. In the latter's case, the supply is limited due to major issues caused by an Yntn virus infection. For other waxy varieties, the prices usually range between 20 and 25 € / q.

Floury potatoes: There are two trends underway in this market. There has been an increase in the supply of batches initially intended for the industry, as well as batches affected by problems like a too high PSE, damage and/or germination. However, the prices of top quality potatoes are stable and could still increase in the coming weeks / months. These vary widely depending on the quality, ranging between 10 and 15 € / q.

Futures market:
EEX in Leipzig (€ / q) Bintje, Agria and related industrial varieties, 40 mm, min 60% 50 mm


Industrial market: prices remain unchanged, ranging between 2.00 and 2.50 € / q, depending on the variety and quality, mainly for the surplus tons from contracts. Prices for the Inno and Russet amount to around 3.00 € / q. Shipments to Spain and Portugal. Fresh market: prices for waxy varieties (yellow and red) range between 23 and 28.00 € / q (washable, 35-55 mm, in big-bag).

Industrial potatoes, in bulk, for export, excl.VAT, Nord Seine, € / qt, min - max (average) (RNM):

Fresh market (early and semi-early potatoes): the prices of waxy potatoes remain unchanged: € 10.83 / q (€ 10.83 / q last week), and those of floury potatoes are also stable: € 10.17 / q (10.17 € / q last week). The demand is normal. In Lower Saxony (the "Kartoffelland" of the BRD), the precariousness of the lots in storage continues to affect the market. This isn't the case in North Rhine / Westphalia.

The activity of peelers has been reduced, while farm sales are improving. Exports are quiet, except for those to faraway destinations such as Africa and Asia.

Industry market (storage varieties): stable and unchanged market. The industry prefers contracts. Prices stand at around 3.50 € / q for the Innovator / Agria (3.50 € / q last week) and remain also unchanged for the Challenger / Fontane: 3.00 € / q (3.00 € / q last week). Slightly stronger prices for crisps / chips varieties: between 5 and 8.00 € / q
Germination problems have been reported in all markets.

*If no work is done on the fields, 1 € / q in sorting costs must be deducted from the price

Organic potatoes: the prices at origin remain unchanged and amount to around 41.00 € / q (all varieties and markets combined), with a negotiable price.

Prices in the free market (all varieties combined) amounted to £ 11.85 / q (a reduction of £ 0.43 / q) for the week ending on 21/11. Market prices have dropped after an increase in the supply of lower quality potatoes and fewer purchases.

For more information:

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