Good morning, everyone!
We start this week with some very interesting and important news for potato growers.
Changing weather conditions have many effects on potato production, last week we talked about delayed harvests and rising prices. On the other hand, due to the strong demand for potatoes which increases each year, the production area increases continuously and there are more and more productive varieties to meet this strong demand. The surplus of potatoes on the market is so large that the total value of the products decreases considerably, given the extremely low prices.
These last ten years have been marked by three seasons during which there has been a very significant surplus of potato production available on the market which consequently has been sold at very “cheap” prices. Farmers have had to find alternatives to be able to sell a very large volume of potatoes which, for the moment, are not established by existing agreements.
This is why the UNPT (National Union of Potato Growers), ABS (Algemeen Boerensyndicaat, Flandres) and FWA (Agriculture Federation of the Walloon Region) launched the Interreg GEPOS project last year, supported by the European Regional Development Fund, which aims to seek alternative outlets in Northern France, Flanders and Wallonia in order to establish conditions that will make it possible to absorb the surplus production.
In order for the project to be implemented it is important to be able to establish prior agreements and convince producers to collaborate on a large scale and across borders to deliver these potato volumes on favourable terms. It will normally be finalised in June 2019.