Dismal weather conditions have kept home consumption and retail sales buoyant this summer period. Growers continue to battle with extremely difficult ground conditions this season. At present, yields of new season Rooster are expected to be quite poor, with many growers reporting small numbers under plants. Poor conditions and projected low yields, coupled with exceedingly high input costs, will make this season very challenging for growers. Blight pressure remains high which is an additional cost and workload for growers.
Stocks of old season Rooster are now extremely tight, with high prices accordingly for any remaining stocks. Likewise, prices and demand for the peeling stock are strong. Queens continue to be harvested where possible.
Lifting has been restricted in the U.K. following heavy rain in many areas. It is reported that crops look very well, but top growth has been better than tuber growth over the past three weeks, especially on later plantings. Tuber numbers on early plantings are good and there is good yield potential but later plantings still have “a lot to do” and “low tuber number” is common which may restrict yield potential.
Yields are reported to be light in many European countries and there are some issues with dry matter following recent rainfall.