Analysts at Market and consumer data analytics company A-INSIGHTS report that global frozen potato trade volumes have stabilized in July, with the year-to-date volume remaining 0.5% above the pre-COVID levels of 2019.
Compared to July 2019, the monthly trade volume was down 0.3%, driven mainly by a 7.6% decline in exports from Belgium and a 6.2% decline in exports from the Netherlands.
Both countries continue to witness pressure on export prices, but with a below-average harvest and increased raw potato prices, the negative price effect is expected to phase out in the coming months.
North American producers managed to up the monthly export volumes, but not as significant as the more than doubled exports from India. The sharp increase in exports from India is primarily related to the Philippines (+1.5 thousand tons).
UK imports continue to drop after a minor recovery in June
A substantial part of the export decline for both Belgium and the Netherlands is caused by reduced imports from the UK. Imports by the UK have been below pre-Covid levels for most of 2021, due to which the year-to-date volume (400.6 thousand tons) is over 20% below the level of 2019 (509.3 thousand tons).
With most of the social restrictions in the country eliminated, the reduced import appears to be an effect of the new trade situation after the UK’s departure from the EU.