20 December 2019
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Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board

Potato Weekly

20 December 2019

At a glance

  • Heavy rain has continued this week causing more problems for those with potatoes still in the ground.
  • There are some reports of later lifted crops breaking down in store, but many have been moved early to avoid this. Crops in store will need close monitoring to ensure problems are controlled.
  • Many processors and packhouses have been working off contracted material in the run up to Christmas, limiting any uplift of free-buy material trade.

Additional information

Production estimate update
  • The second 2019 provisional production estimate is 5.19Mt, with a range of +/- 159Kt.
    • This estimate is based off an unharvested area of 5.5% and a sample of 292 grower panel forms.
    • The estimated yield has risen from the first estimate to just over c.46t/ha, resulting in the increased production prediction.
  • A final production figure will be released in the New Year, when more data has been received. As further forms are submitted, we may well see the production and unharvested area figures change again.
  • The November stocks estimate will also be released in the New Year.
How tight does the GB potato market look?
  • This autumn has been the wettest across England since 2000 and the fifth wettest on record. These conditions have hampered lifting across GB, with progress particularly slow in Yorkshire and the North of England.
  • What impact might this have on supply levels for the coming season? Much depends on the sector, as this article will explain.
Christmas period
  • This is the last Potato Weekly publication for 2019. The next report will be out on Friday 10th January. 
  • On behalf of all at the AHDB we would like to wish all our readers a Happy Christmas. 

Weekly prices

2019 crop - Packing
England - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
  • Many packhouses are covered by contracted packing supplies for the Christmas period which has meant free-buy demand for many is quiet.
Scotland - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
2019 crop - Bags
GB - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
  • Subdued chip shop demand in the run up to Christmas has meant bag trade has been slow for many.
  • Fry colour is an issue for later lifted material.
East (Yorks, East Mids, Eastern Counties) - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
West (West Mids, Wales, North West) - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
South (South West, South, South East) - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
Scotland - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
Insufficient quotes reported. 
2019 crop - Processing
GB - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
  • Peeling trade has been busy in the run up to Christmas, but most other processing sectors are under contract.
2019 crop - Exports
GB - All prices free-buy, ex farm, £/t unless otherwise stated.
  • Export trade into Ireland and the Netherlands has been reported, but we are unable to publish prices due to the number of quotes received.
  • Trade into the Canaries has been relatively busy still in the run up to Christmas.

These quotes are from actual free-buy trades collected by a weekly telephone survey of buyers, growers and merchants on a Wednesday and Thursday.
They give an indication of the range of prices achieved in the past week.
Any underlined and italicised prices are based on a smaller sample and will only display the median value.
n/q = no quotes in last reported week.
For further information on what these prices mean and how they are calculated,
please click here.

Quick links

Author

Alice Bailey
Analyst

Alice.Bailey@ahdb.org.uk
02476 47 8840

Or meet the Market Intelligence Potato Team here.