Potato Prices & Commentary

Each week the IFA compiles prices paid or quoted to its members nationwide. Take a look at the latest report below.

August 5, 2020

 

Ex-Farm Potato Prices reported to IFA

  Low High Average
Rooster box €330 €380 €350
Rooster 10 kg bag €3.30 €4.00 €3.50
New Season Queen 10kg bag €6 €8 €7

 

The market for the food service sector remains very flat as pubs and restaurants are slow to get going again, retail demand has leveled off but remains positive. Most old season Rooster stock is now used up and merchants are seeking out any remaining stock. The early market is holding quite well and lifting continues along the east coast, however, there are more reports this week that tuber numbers are down.

Exporters of seed from the U.K. to Europe are preparing to ensure that as much as possible is completed by the 31st December in anticipation of a no-deal Brexit. Early plantings which are being lifted are showing a trend for low tuber count and bold tubers. Buyers in the fresh sector which includes salads and ware are warning growers to take extreme care to avoid oversize as there is currently “no” market outlet for these grades.

The NEPG expect the EU crop to be slightly higher this year. Plantings have increased by around 0.5%. A significant increase is expected in Poland, but a small decrease in Spain is predicted. If yields are at the 5-year average, production could increase by 4.2%, but the weather will be the determining factor. Many areas are reporting lower tuber numbers this year, and this could yet be significant

July 29, 2020

 

Ex-Farm Potato Prices reported to IFA

  Low High Average
Rooster box €330 €380 €350
Rooster 10 kg bag €3.30 €4.00 €3.50
New Season Queen 10kg bag €7 €9 €8

 

Liftings of Queens continue along the east coast this week, tuber numbers are reported to be slightly down but quality is excellent. The majority of Queens in the south east are now lifted and clearing well. Overall retail demand remains buoyant and the food service sector is continuing to improve. Demand for early crop is slightly quieter this week.

In the U.K new-crop accounts for the majority of crop movement in potato markets this week. Some old-crop movement continues, mostly for packing and processing but in smaller volumes. This old-crop movement will likely reduce to very negligible levels as we move into August, facing more new-crop supplies.

Across Europe demand for new season crop appears to be subdued, as demand is still focused on clearing contracted supplies of old crop. As a result of this, prices for new crop are dropping slightly. It is hoped this situation will improve in the next week. Also, the lack of demand in the processing sector is rubbing off into the fresh sector where prices are also under pressure, although there are indications that values “may have stabilised”.

 

 

July 22, 2020

 

Ex-Farm Potato Prices reported to IFA

  Low High Average
Rooster box €330 €380 €350
Rooster 10 kg bag €3.30 €4.00 €3.50
New Season Queen 10kg bag €7 €9 €8

 

Preliminary results from the IFA early planting survey suggest that early plantings were slightly increased up some 3% on last year. Queens accounted for the slight increase in plantings, the area of Home Guard decreased slightly and Premier area remained static. The first crops of early Rooster should be harvested early to mid-August. The peeling market appears to be improving slightly as more restaurants are re-opening.

In the U.K much of the overall movement in the potato trade has been new-crop contracted supply. As such, demand for free-buy has been relatively muted and so supplies continue to be lifted into stores. New-crop has accounted for much of the movement in packing markets this week. There were more reports of purchasers transitioning into the new-crop as planned.

Across Europe sales of product increased rapidly once lockdown ended but there is feeling that demand is now starting to level off.  Demand for export is subdued where countries are still restricting movement.

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