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Potato sales going well, but purchasers reluctant due to ban on sprout inhibitors

Potato sales going well, but purchasers reluctant due to ban on sprout inhibitors

The sale of potatoes is not entirely disappointing at the moment, observes Felix Molenaar of potato and vegetable wholesaler Molenaar from Haarlem.

Felix Molenaar:
 
"At the same time, the ban on chlorpropham (CIPC), which inhibits the germination of potatoes, is causing great reluctance among buyers. In other years, you sometimes kept a bit more stock, but now we will no longer buy from the farmer before the stocks are gone."
When the demand for winter produce disappears, fewer potatoes are immediately bought because of the limited shelf life, he says.

Felix Molenaar:
 
"Gambling and putting down your trade is no longer an option. We do have good cooling facilities here, but you can't immediately process the potatoes due to the risk of blue potatoes. This makes you much more alert to your purchasing and you select even more strictly with the farmer which batches are still suitable."
In his opinion, prices are currently at a fairly stable level, but the growers are not getting it right.

The Corona measures have a significant impact on the potato trade, he added. Compared to previous years, more potatoes are sold in the shops. Home consumption is at a higher level and you can also see some demand for bantam and more luxurious varieties, for with asparagus.

Felix Molenaar:
 
"We have also received the first imported potatoes from Morocco and next week we expect the new harvest from Malta. That is good just before Easter, although demand is still calm at the moment due to the cold and dark weather."

"And that is the general picture. The trade is continuing, but everyone remains calm. We are missing the chip market throughout Europe. There are no tourists and the catering industry is closed."
It is not without reason that the processing figures in the Netherlands and Belgium are 20 to 30% lower, he explains.

Felix Molenaar:
 
"I understand that the growers would like to see a higher price, but there is simply no more to be had at the moment. For the consumer market I see some revival happening. At the moment there is little demand from abroad, but that can certainly come later in the season."
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