Potato harvesting© Tim Scrivener

Potato prices have increased for the first time since 16 September, as more supplies headed into stores.

The GB average price increased 50p/t in the week to 14 October, to £154/t ex-farm, while the GB free-buy average rose £1.49/t to £179.30/t.

Contract trade continued to account for a greater proportion than free-buy in the overall sample, said a report by AHDB Potatoes.

See also: Read more Prices & Trends

The weakening of sterling caused GB prices to continue to drop in euro terms, meaning some GB processing potatoes were priced at about €100/t (£89/t) below values on the Continent.

This was opening up strong demand for GB supplies from continental processors.

Bag supplies had become harder to source as growers focused on loading into store, which firmed prices in all areas; particularly for Maris Piper, which gained £20/t on the week to average £180/t.

In contrast, the packing crop lost ground, with Desiree losing £50/t on the week to average £205/t.

Lifting conditions had improved in parts of England and Wales due to recent showers, with a similar picture in Scotland. Waste levels were still reportedly higher than normal, mainly due to greening and growth cracking, with some slug damage and bruising.