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AMI: where should the mountain of German potatoes go?

Record yields are causing problems for the German potato industry: the yield is bigger than the demand, the competition is high and the export market offers little chance, reports the German Agrarmarkt Informations-Gesellschaft (AMI) (Agricultural Information Service Market)

"Even setting the prices low is not enough to guarantee sales. With a harvest volume of around 11.5 million tons, 1.8 million tons more than last year must be placed on the market. This predominantly has to do with potato consumption," reports AMI. This year the yield per hectare was larger than ever before: 46,900 tons per hectare (2013: 39,800 tons per hectare), according to provisional numbers from the German Ministry of Food and Agriculture. "Last year the harvest volume matched the level of demand, but now there are not even enough places to store all the potatoes. Even the marketing channels for animal feed, bio-gas production and the starch industry mostly have enough potatoes," reports the AMI.

The oversupply has considerably decreased the price of potatoes in the last few weeks. Good quality potatoes are going for only 5.00 Euro per 100 kg. On top of this, demand is currently decreasing. In the upcoming weeks the growers do not have much hope for better prices. Despite a bigger harvest volume and good quality potatoes, the growers are losing out this season, while the consumers are happy with the favourable prices of fresh potatoes and potato products.

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