Potato market chronicle January 2022

Publication author: Frédéric Laviron – Roussineau SA

Potato market chronicle January 2022

One thing is certain: French fresh potato production was, in terms of volume, correct. With this in mind, we’re all familiar with the adage: “Before Christmas, I can sell potatoes; after Christmas, I have to sell potatoes”.


The industry’s responsiveness?

While we can be pleased with the industry’s responsiveness in meeting the expectations of the new clientele in Eastern Europe, the fact remains that we are still short of our volumes on our traditional markets and partners on the Iberian Peninsula, demanding high tuber quality in a context of falling consumption.

Of course, export volumes are buoyant, and I expect this to continue over the coming months in the East, as we await the opening of new markets such as Poland and the Czech Republic, unless the early potatoes from Greece, Egypt, Israel and, of course, Spain put a serious brake on our momentum.

Don’t relax your efforts for the next harvest

No, my main concern is that we shouldn’t relax our efforts, and that the outlook for the next harvest is hypothetical. Looking at recent years, we can see that demand is concentrated on high-quality, washable products and that, barring climatic incidents (as is the case this year in the East), we are reduced to producing, processing and selling only this type of quality and product.
and products.
What about a second-rate product? Many farmers today are wondering whether they should switch all or part of their acreage to more profitable or more reliable crops such as cereals, corn and, of course, processing potatoes. The technical constraints weighing on production, the difficulty of keeping potatoes in the fridge, the growing number of certifications, the demand for quality… all these factors combine to bring about a profound change in the face of future production at every level of the industry.