By FWi staff

POTATO prices remain under pressure this week as growers able to lift prefer to sell rather than store in wet conditions.

This situation is reflected in the British Potato Council weekly GB ex-farm average which dropped 7.61/t to 106.13/t.

Persistent poor weather has done little to improve conditions in the field and just over 20% of the crop has been lifted to date (25 September).

And with conditions unlikely to improve, progress this week will remain slow, reports the BPC.

With restrictions on lifting and preparation for storage, overall clearance has now fallen behind last year, standing at 29,858ha last Friday (22 September), compared with 32,191ha in 1999.

In East Anglia and Lincolnshire bulk grade 1 Edwards are mainly 170-185/t, reds 140-160/t and Maris Piper 140-180/t.

Grade 2 samples are mainly 50-100/t.

Bagged whites are mainly 70-130/t, up to 150/t for best Cara, with reds mainly 90-120/t.

In the south and Wales white varieties are mainly 100-140/t, up to 160/t for best Maris Piper and Desiree. Bagged whites are mostly 80-90/t, reds 80-110/t.

Bulk whites in the Midlands are fetching 100-120/t for good baker content, up to 160/t for best Maris Piper.

Reds are mostly 100-150/t. Bagged Maris Piper are worth 80-120/t, non-chipping varieties mainly 60-100/t.

Prices in the north are slightly weaker with bulk whites mainly 70-100/t, up to 150-80/t for high baker content material.

Bagged whites are worth 80-100/t, 120/t for best.