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Potato Market Update 28th September

Irish potatoes: Retail demand and consumption have remained stable

Retail demand and consumption have remained stable and are currently described as similar to pre-pandemic levels. Many growers are now digging into stores. Harvest conditions have been reported to be very dry, especially in the southeast, and some growers are delaying the harvest to avoid crop damage.

Demand for chipping varieties is strong, with growers reporting product inquiries from Europe. At this point, Queens has cleaned up pretty well. The Kerr Pinks harvest started with good quality reports, but yields were significantly lower.

In the UK, recent rainfall has given some crops a boost; improved yields have been seen in the West Midlands. In the East, rain has been too late to make any significant difference. Agronomists note that some later varieties including Markies and Melody have “greened up” but now have lower D.M. and signs of secondary growth.

Quality issues are now also very concerning. Levels of common scab in M.Piper are “disturbing” from Scotland down to the South East and “internals” are also being found. Bruising caused by high dry matter but also “tube sensitivity” is causing some high levels of rejection but damage levels are also on the increase as soils dry out again.

Lifting conditions across Northern Europe have improved greatly in areas which caught the rain last week but there are still parts which are dry and it is still difficult to lift crops without causing damage.


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