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AHDB Exports present at Potato Europe as it expands its mandate to fresh potatoes and potato products

AHDB Exports at Potato Europe as it expands its mandate to fresh potatoes and potato products

AHDB exports is present at Potato Europe 2017 with a large stand, with co-exhibitors Caithness Potato Export, Cygnet PEP, Cullen Allen, Greenvale Seed, James Hutton Limited and SASA

With over 250 exhibitors, and 15,000 visitors from around the world, Potato Europe is a key marketplace for the GB potato sector, and it is estimated that business hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of business will be instigated at the event.

AHDB host a stand at this event to support the development of GB export activity; assisting levy payers to actively build their businesses, as well as supporting and enhancing the reputation of the British potato industry abroad.

AHDB Exports will also use the opportunity to share the activities of our export team over 2017/18, with a specific focus on our work (with SASA and James Hutton Ltd) to open the Kenyan market to GB seed exports.

About PotatoEurope

British potato exporters will instigate deals worth hundreds of thousands of pounds at this year’s Potato Europe event, held next week in Holland.

With over 250 exhibitors, and 15,000 visitors from around the world, Potato Europe is a key marketplace for the GB potato sector, and British-based potato companies will gather on the AHDB Exports stand to discuss both the past and upcoming export season with new and existing customers. The exhibitors this year include Greenvale AP, Caithness Potatoes, Cygnet PEP, James Hutton Ltd, Cullen Allen and SASA.

Looking forward to strike a deal

Niall Arbuckle from Greenvale AP says the show is the ideal venue for striking deals with key clients in countries such as Egypt, Morocco, Israel and Jordan.

Niall Arbuckle, Greenvale AP:

“It’s an intense couple of days where we sit down with our customers and agree tonnages for the coming export season.”

“We’ll discuss quality and quantity and the end result is usually 10,000 – 12,000 tonnes of potatoes ordered from our key customers.”
Stephen Hole from Caithness Potatoes agrees that Potato Europe is the ideal place to connect with current and potential clients.

Stephen Hole from Caithness Potatoes:

“Potato Europe is a really important international meeting place, especially as in this business you don’t get many opportunities to sit down with your clients face to face.”

“As well as discussing potential orders for the coming season we want to make our customers aware that have recently started producing seed in four European countries, Holland, France, Denmark and Poland.”

“This will give European customers the opportunity to purchase high quality seed locally and so allows us to access previously untapped markets.”
For the AHDB Export Team, who are constantly working to open or improve access to markets for British exporters, the event offers the opportunity to connect with key contacts.

Rob Burns, AHDB’s Head of Crop Trade Market Development, will be on stand gathering intelligence and discussing the benefits of GB’s high health seed potato sector.

Rob Burns, AHDB’s Head of Crop Trade Market Development:

“Britain currently exports seed potatoes to over 30 countries worldwide and AHDB is currently working on plans to both develop new markets and increase volumes currently going in to existing markets.”

“We are looking to increase our exports in a number of areas including Russia, the Middle East and Brazil and the show offers us the chance to continue discussions with these target markets.”

“Middle East and the Gulf states are of particular interest as potential new markets as their previous supplier of seed potatoes have limited production as part of water saving measures.”

Stand and co-exhibitors

Importers and growers looking to buy high health, high quality seed are invited to visit AHDB Potatoes GB seed stand (see design in the top picture). Our stand helps international seed buyers and importers connect with experienced exporters of quality British seed.

As usual the AHDB stand will host some of the biggest and most progressive companies from the British potato industry, offering the ideal chance to build new relationships and explore potential business opportunities. GB seed exporters will also be present on the AHDB stand to welcome new and existing contacts, ensuring visitors have one central meeting place which showcases the best of British seed.


Rob Burns, Head of Crops Export Market Development at AHDB

Rob Burns, Head of Crops Export Trade Development:

“British seed potatoes are rightly renowned across the world.”

“Not only are they high health and quality, they are also diverse, we have a great range of varieties which thrive in a range of conditions.”

AHDB's Potato Europe Co-exhibitors

  • Caithness Potato Export
  • Cygnet PEP
  • Cullen Allen
  • Greenvale Seed
  • James Hutton Limited
  • SASA
More on these companies in this AHDB Newsletter (pdf; in English).
Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish versions of this newsletter are available on request. Click to Email margaret.skinner@ahdb.org.uk

AHDB Staff at PotatoEurope

  • Rob Burns, Head of Crop Trade Market Development
  • Margaret Skinner, Exports Coordinator
  • Claire Hodge, Potatoes Knowledge Exchange Manager
  • Adrian Briddon, Crop Storage Research Scientist
  • Amanda Robins, Events Manager
  • Sarah Hunter-Argyle and Jimmy Phillips, Communications
  • Ben Coates, Harpal Paneser, Digital
  • Sophie Churchill (chair non-exec)

AHDB Export Mission expanded to fresh potato and products

Export activities in the potato sector largely focus on the development of new market opportunities especially in third countries as EU is not a major destination for GB production.

The activities are split between technical/mission visits, both inward and outward and overseas trade events. The missions are primarily to open new markets, refine and improve import conditions and to maintain contact with our larger existing markets.

Most of the mission work we undertake is in partnership with the export team in Scottish Government and to a lesser extent with DEFRA. Technical/mission activities operate at a Government to Government level and we are fortunate that our relationship with both Scottish Government and DEFRA allows us the opportunity to not only attend meetings but actively participate in finalising agreements.

The strategy underpinning all of these activities is: Growing the export opportunity and facilitating trade to maximise the potential of GB potato exports.

Historically all of our activities have been aimed at seed potato exports and as 80% of the seed production is Scottish we have a physical presence in Edinburgh where we are close to the production and export activities.

Changes to the AHDB Potato strategy have now given the export team the opportunity to expand the remit to fresh potato and products and we are exploring how best to address this.

This year's Trade Missions AHDB

During the year April 2017 to March 2018 AHDB crop exports team will visit or host visits from the following countries:

  • Mission to Israel - February 2017 to discuss increase GB market share.

  • Fact finding visit to Oman - June 2017 to investigate the potential of this market for exports

  • Inward mission from Brazil - June 2017 to agree equivalence between Brazilian and GB seed grades and discuss the removal of the requirement to test for quarantine organisms.

  • Inward mission from India - August 2017 to meet the new head of Central Potato Research Institute, Shimla and the head of Indian Council of Agricultural Research and discuss access to Indian market for our seed exporters.

  • Inward mission from Russia - September 2017 to discuss increasing access to this huge market for both seed and fresh potato exports.

  • Inward Mission from Egypt – October 2017 to meet the new head of Central Administration for Plant Quarantine and to showcase our industry and supporting science to her. Egypt is a vital market for our exporters as they import around 60% of our total export tonnage.

  • Fact finding visit to Kuwait and Qatar – October 2017 to understand supply chains and market dynamics in these two countries. Middle East and the Gulf states are of particular interest as potential new markets as Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, their previous supplier of seed potatoes has banned potato production as part of water saving measures.

  • Technical visit to Kenya – November 2017 to observe our AHDB funded seed trials and discuss performance of GB varieties in Kenya and develop closer links with Kenyan Potato Council and seed importers.

  • Outward mission to Brazil – January 2018 to finalise discussions on removing requirement for disease testing on GB seed entering Brazil and also to better understand supply chain and potato industry
Companies in this Article
The James Hutton Institute is an international research centre based in Scotland.
AHDB Potatoes (formerly known as Potato Council) is a public body working on behalf of potato growers and purchasers to promote British potatoes.
Caithness Potatoes is a producer of seed potatoes and potatoes for consumption located in Scotland.
Cullen Allen is one of the longest established potato businesses in the UK, specialising in production and marketing of seed potatoes from Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Cygnet PB is Britain's biggest potato breeder and one of the largest seed potato growers in the country.
Greenvale AP  is UK’s leading supplier of fresh potatoes. Next to three state of the art potato-packing operations situated in Shropshire, Berwickshire and Cambridgeshire, Greenvale AP operates a specialist factory in Cambridgeshire that is dedicated to the production of mashed potato trading under the Greenvale Foods Ltd banner.
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