Call for 9% hike in potato levy

5 October 2001

Call for 9% hike in potato levy

By Charles Abel

POTATO levy rates must rise by more than 9% to protect a range of marketing and research services, claims the British Potato Council.

The council, which funds research and promotes British potatoes, said levies must be increased by 3.50 from 37.50/hectare to 40/ha.

The trade levy on every crop movement up to retail level must rise 2p to 17p/tonne, equivalent to 8.50/ha for a typical 50t/ha crop, it added.

Inflation and lower plantings mean that the increases are essential, said Nigel Jupe, chief executive of the Oxford-based organisation.

The council spends about 6.5 million every year on research, market information and promotions such as National Chip Week.

Mr Jupe said: “Only one person in the past two weeks has suggested a lower levy and the associated cut in services.”

The council is set to put its plan to government in November, ahead of formal industry consultation this winter.

If the new rates are rejected, the levy will remain unchanged. The industry must then decide where service cuts are made, said Mr Jupe.

Levies were last increased in 1999, when they rose by 4%.


CLICK HERE to receive FWis FREE new weekly email newsletter, providing an instant link to all the major additions and updates relevant to your arable business.

See more