Chinese potato production areas are distributed across Shandong, Inner Mongolia, Guangxi, and Yunnan. The price of potatoes declined this year and reached a new low point. Market demand is rather weak. In addition, many production areas in China suffered from excessive rainfall, which raises the risk of rotten potatoes. These potatoes are not easily stored, so farmers prefer to sell them off before they spoil. That is why the price recently dropped.
"In Shandong the production volume is more or less the same as in previous years, but excessive rainfall affected the size of potatoes. They are somewhat smaller this year. The new harvest of Shandong potatoes entered the market in May. The opening price was lower than around the same time last year. The price increased somewhat when the weather conditions deteriorated and frequent rainfall began. The current price hovers between 0.95-1.10 yuan [0.15-0.17 USD] per 0.5 kg." This is according to Mr. Li Lin of Shandong Lilin Potato Plantation Co., Ltd.
Mr. Li Lin continued, "the rising trend is mainly a result of excessive rainfall in Inner Mongolia. Production areas there are unable to deliver their harvest as usual. And so their supply volume suddenly declined. And visiting traders shifted their attention to Shandong instead. Potato trade in Shandong speeded up and the price slightly improved. But I think the rising trend is only temporary. The price will likely return to normal later in the season. That is on the one hand because extreme weather conditions are temporary, and on the other hand because the supply season of northern production areas has only just begun. The overall supply volume will greatly increase in the coming weeks and months."
As for export, the rising shipping cost and container shortages, as well as the general impact of the pandemic on the international market, all weaken the export market. The conditions are not great for Shandong potatoes. Mr. Li Lin explained, "we are not directly engaged in potato export trade, but we supply exporters. They have given us to understand that the overall export volume of Shandong potatoes declined by 30%-35% compared to last year. That is mostly because exporters encountered too many uncertainties this season. Not only is the cost price of export higher this year, but even the suppliers who receive orders may not be able to find cargo space for their products."
For more information:
Mr. Li Lin
Shandong Lilin Potato Plantation Co., Ltd.
Tel.: +86 150 6963 0110