By FWi staff

AS the potato season draws to a close, the new-crop trade is beginning to attract more interest, particularly chipping material.

But it is not going to be an easy season with merchants finding present trading conditions difficult. The main problems appear to be sourcing supplies and tight margins.

Trade from Jersey is now very light and confined to sales for the whole crop market in the UK. Total exports on Monday (3 July) were around 41,500t, similar to last year.

There is very little movement from Cornwall. Prices in bulk are from 70-100/t; Premiere for chipping are 100-120/t.

In Pembroke, following a poor start, trade has begun to pick up. Premiere chipping material is fetching 120/t for best, with packing at 85-100/t and bags at 80-90/t ex farm.

Rain has again delayed lifting in the east, but there is strong demand for frying samples and packing orders.

Harvester graded samples range from 100/t up to 130/t for best. Maris Bard are worth 150/t for best and Dundrod up to 180/t.

Volume movement in the Midlands and Lincolnshire is increasing especially frying and packing orders. Bag prices on Monday were 130/t for best.

Whole-crop for packing was fetching 135/t and Maris Bard chipping material up to 150/t for best.

Old-crop

Bulk grade 1 material is mainly 60-90/t with a few top samples fetching 100-180/t.

Estima are worth 120-180/t up to 250/t for best and upward for bakers.

Grade 2 material is light at 10-50/t. There are only a few bagged Piper remaining at 50-80/t up to 100-160/t.

Other varieties are mainly fetching 30-55/t, up to a top of 170/t in East Anglia.

The weekly GB ex-farm average rose only 97p to 86.73/t, which is a reflection of average quality stock dominating movement.