Jan-Eric Geersing's Dutch company focuses on seed potatoes, and he stays well on top of ware potato market happenings. "That market's a madhouse. Consumer potatoes are currently selling for more than €60/100 kg. It's starting to resemble the onion market, and we could well get high ware potato prices for the third consecutive year," he tells FarmTrade, the Dutch agricultural trade organization.
Marcel and Jan-Eric Geersing
Though the market is quietening down, there is still movement. Some growers still choose to plow over corn fields to plant potatoes. Just this week, Jan Eric sold a load of French fry variety seed potatoes. "Within a day."
"The conditions are unusual in many ways. This year I've traveled more than in previous years so I have a good idea of the market. Drought, as well as floods, haven't helped. For example, Israel has plenty of Phytophthora; there are even places where previously potted potatoes have been removed and new ones planted," Jan-Eric explains.
"Throughput-wise, it's also different. Spain is normally close to Israel with deliveries, but the drought has widened that gap. Those batches should be gone soon too. In northern Greece, growers in many areas are still planting, which is extremely late. But everything planted early has experienced terrible conditions."
Skyhigh costs and high risks associated with seed potato cultivation mean many growers have begun growing other crops. The dismal conditions have also resulted in increased yield losses. "I've heard that the seed potatoes area has shrunk by about 10%. Ware potato prices could, therefore, be high for the third year in a row," Jan-Eric concludes.
For more information:
Geersing Potato Specialist B.V.
8302 AC, Emmeloord, NL
Tel: +31 (0) 610 537 192