UK: “Potato market on its knees”
“It is a very low priced season,” he says. “The sales are normal, but there is quite a large oversupply of potatoes at present. Right now, the best price for a Maris Piper from some of the best areas is around 100 pounds per tonne. There are potatoes being traded for as low as 15 pounds per tonne in Belgium. The potatoes for packaging and contracts are becoming slightly more.”
Colin believes one of the reasons for this is that production, all over Europe, is up considerably compared with last year.
“In some of the Eastern European countries, such as Poland they have the same situation. I believe Germany was even up around 17% compared to last year, which is a very large increase.”
The conditions during the growing season were very good, which has lead, not only to a higher yield, but also to larger crops compared to previous years. This has meant that the production per hectare has greatly increased.
“One of the main reasons the prices are down is that there are more potatoes in terms of tonnes than there were in previous seasons. Although the quality is particularly good at the moment, not all potatoes for general sales are kept in controlled stores, which means they may not keep well, reducing the quality.”
“What the market needs is a return to normal seasonal temperatures. I want to be optimistic about the rest of the season, but all I can say for now is that it can’t get any worse. The market is on its knees as far a prices are concerned.”
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