This season, significant product quantities have already been taken off the processing market. In Germany, starch plants used large volumes already in August and September, before their own starch potatoes became available. In addition, a rather large quantity was sold for cattle feed and production of alternative energy. The export of fresh potatoes has also gotten started, and expectations on the continent are high.
In many cases, the question is whether the quality of stored product is suitable for long-term storage. This leads to decisions to sell shipments on alternative markets before higher storage costs emerge. This has led to the pressure on the market subsiding for a while. Because of this, large volumes disappeared off the market outside the normal system.
This season, the dry matter content is low in some crops. This means more commodities are needed for the final product. On the European continent, the processing industry grew quickly in the last 5 years, particularly in Belgium. This season, the processors made use of the low prices for commodities to build up stock. One of the main reasons for increase in commodity use are the export opportunities for the processing industry outside the EU. The export to destinations farther away, outside the EU, has risen enormously in the past 5 years. The NEPG expects a further expansion of export opportunities as a result of lower prices and the Euro-dollar exchange rate.
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