New crop supplies depress potato prices

Potato prices have dropped back sharply as increased new crop supplies become available.

The AHDB’s GB weekly average price fell by £12.46/t in the week to 14 August, to £174.56/t while the free-buy average decreased by £17.18/t to £183.82/t.

“The proportion of contract trade in the sample increased from last week and still accounted for the majority of the sample,” said the AHDB report.

See also: More prices and trends

“Contracted stocks dominated movement (in the packing sector) but there were increased supplies of free-buy whites, including Maris Piper, which put prices under a little pressure.”

Maris Piper lost as much as £15/t on the week, to £180-£220/t. “Samples are generally of good quality many of which are now fully set skinned,” said the report.

There was good demand for chipping supplies, particularly around coastal holiday areas, but elsewhere trade was slow.

Most chipping supplies were trading at £170-£200/t depending on variety and sample, with some Sagitta fetching up to £210/t.

As harvest progressed, yields and tuber size were proving variable but quality appeared good, said the report.

“Growing crops were in good order but with the dry conditions irrigation was still necessary on lighter soils and blight spraying remained a priority. The odd crop is showing signs of early senescence.”

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