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Heavy rainfall over the weekend hampered lifting especially along the west coast. Conditions have improved slightly as the week progresses, however, harvesting on heavier fields is likely to remain difficult as more rain is forecast.

Supplies remain temporarily tightened with strong market demand for crops available. Apart from this, overall the growing season has been quite balanced to date. Difficult harvest conditions have also been reported in the U.K. this week.

Demand for export to Eastern Europe has slowed as potential importing countries are using their own supplies. Movement to the Canaries continues at a steady pace with more interest following forecasted rain. Buyers in the Island are looking to pull prices, but reports indicate that there is little change in quoted prices and sellers remain confident.

Ex-Farm Potato Prices reported to IFA

  Low High Average
Rooster box (new season) €370 €410 €380
Rooster10 kg bag €4.00 €4.80 €4.30
Whites €340 €400 €370
K Pinks €5.00 €5.50 €5.20

IFA President Joe Healy has called on consumers and retailers to support Irish potato growers.

He said the Irish potato industry is an important indigenous sector worth €80m at farm gate. 500 growers plant over 8,000 hectares annually.

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With storm Lorenzo looming some growers are feeling the pressure as harvest conditions continue to deteriorate across the country, following heavy rain over the weekend. Supplies have temporarily tightened as growers struggle to get crops out of the ground, however, there is strong market demand for any produce available. Again, reports indicate that yields are not exceptional due to weather conditions earlier in the season.

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Harvesting of main crop Rooster finally resumed in Donegal last week after the dry spell of weather. Harvest appears to be mainly on track for this time of the year around the country. Growers are reminded not to rule out supplying the peeling market with any material that is not fit for the wholesale market. Reports this week indicate that peeling potatoes are making €240/tonne. Most of the early season rooster has cleared the market and this now leaves room for the main crop to enter the market.

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Dryer weather this week is welcomed by areas where harvesting conditions are problematic, particularly Donegal. This dry period will hopefully aid the digging of the main Rooster crop. National Potato Day takes place on October 4th this year. National Potato Day encourages consumers to purchase Irish potatoes and growers are encouraged to support any events taking place.

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