Retail sales and consumption were steady, with cooling temperatures leading to higher consumption. Growing conditions for the remainder of the crop, concentrated in Cork and the North East, are very challenging with saturated soils. Soil contamination hampers drying and sorting processes, and large volumes of waste continue to be reported. Overall, this year growers are reporting yields that vary widely, even field-to-field.
World Potato Market reports that exports of product from the EU reached record levels in September and were 7% higher than last year. Prices for product are beginning to level off and it is hoped that momentum can be maintained.
The fresh consumer market is described as "flat", although exporters continue to ask for shipments to Spain, Portugal and Italy, where prices are reported to be increasing. There is demand in Eastern Europe, but these destinations are currently very competitive.
Reports from Scotland indicate that demand for the home trade is still “extremely subdued”. Following the release of some “more favourable” contract prices last week, traders in the South comment that growers have been more willing to talk although there are still very few orders being confirmed.