Tens of Thousands of Hectares with Tubers, Damaged by Storms
The latest Irish Farmers Association (IFA) expert’s “Potato Market Update” report estimates the area damaged by the storms two weeks ago in Belgium, Holland and Germany at around 20,000 ha’s.
“A full assessment can only be made once the crop reaches maturity, but blight is widespread and tuber quality and yields are very likely to have suffered”, the cited document reveals.
In fact, information about this situation was published in IFA’s previous report, where the same experts wrote that storm conditions have wreaked havoc across Europe.
“Rainfall totals were up to 120 and 150mm in the worst hit areas which included the main early processing area in Germany, Southeastern Holland, East Belgium and Northeastern France. There was an exceptional 200 mm over three days in the center of this block. Some growers have already resigned themselves to serious crop losses”, the experts explained.
U.K. agronomists are becoming more conservative with their yield predictions for the new crop.
“Maincrops generally look full of growth, but May plantings still have much to do if they are to realize their potential”, wrote IFA’s experts.
Overall, consumption and demand have improved over the past 10 days following the return of cooler weather conditions. The food service sector and the peeling trade continue to pick up as more people are eligible to dine indoors.
The price of peeling material is currently in the range of EUR180-200/ton. The early market is holding quite well and lifting continues along the east coast, however, there are more reports this week that tuber numbers are down. A blight warning remains in place for southern counties.