2014’s table and processing potato crop is virtually finished, so now it is over to 2015. Not that anyone can ever be 100% certain of anything in the fresh produce industry, but 2015’s West European table potatoes certainly look as they are going to be more expensive than the previous year.
The reasons behind this increase in table potato prices are many, the main factors being:
A) Farmers have reduced the area of packing potato varieties that they have planted, due to 2014’s low prices.
B) Farmers planted more processing potatoes and have taken on more processing contracts.
C) Unfavourable growing conditions (particularly a two-month dry and extremely hot spell on much of the western European mainland at the critical point in the growing season) have reduced yields. For example, in 2014 for an average white table potato, yields were 60 to 70 tonnes per hectare, whilst in 2015 they are roughly 45 to 50 tonnes per hectare, with not much of the growing season left to run.
D) The reduction in the number of tubers per plant in many crops, due to relatively dull conditions during the period of tuber initiation.
So whilst customer’s might have to pay more for their table potatoes, (prices may settle down later on in the season) the good news is that Rush is continually expanding its circle of approved potato farmers, which should help supply demand. Processing potatoes, on the other hand, might actually be slightly cheaper this year, but at this point it is difficult to be certain.
On a positive note, Rush Group’s expertise in programming supply will help keep costs down, especially for customers who made early contracts with them.
So if you are looking for competitively-priced table and processing potatoes from Western Europe, contact Rush Group today.