Potato growers could benefit from a new fixed-price contract, index linked to production costs, launched by processor McCain.

“British growers are supplying 100% of our potatoes now, so we need to secure supplies,” said the firm’s Mark Walmsley. “But we know there has been massive instability with costs, so we have employed an independent firm of business consultants to track all vital costs for potato growers, including pesticides, fertiliser, fuel, labour, land rents and storage costs, especially electricity.”

Prices will be based on key costs tracked from September 2007 to September 2008.