Warnez Potatoes at the recent Fruit Attraction 2022

Warnez Potatoes at the recent Fruit Attraction
Warnez Potatoes at the recent Fruit Attraction
十月 18, 2022
Like many other industries, the potato sector's margins are presently very tight.

Jurgen Duthoo, Warnez Potatoes:
"In France, grower costs are estimated to be five times higher this year. In Belgium, these costs are causing headaches too."

"It will get many growers wondering whether they hang on to their potatoes or sell right away."
This potato specialist, who was at the recent Fruit Attraction in Madrid, considers things on the demand side to be fairly positive.

Jurgen Duthoo:
"We had a lot of great conversations at that event. It's an ideal time, so close to the season, to gauge how the different countries' markets will develop."

"For example, we received many international visitors, who told us what we needed to know about where the upcoming season is headed."

"There's already demand from various European countries for our (un)washed product, and last week we shipped the first bulk shipments for the processing industry."

"We certainly have nothing to complain about for now on the demand side."

"That's true for the Belgian retail side too, where 'food boxes' are gaining popularity. The demand for these convenience products keeps growing."
Warnez Potatoes

Warnez Potatoes

The supply side, however, is a little trickier, he explains.

Jurgen Duthoo:
"We've heard and seen that there's much less volume than in previous years. The difficult, hot summer means the yields per plot vary greatly."

"Things will only become clear at the end of this month when all the work's done. The recent rain did some batches good."

"We're going to have quite a job of it, figuring out where to get high-quality potatoes with which to supply our customers."
There are quality issues to consider, according to this Belgian potato packaging and cultivation company.< Jurgen Duthoo:
"Some batches will have too few large potatoes."

"Plus, there's far more germination because the potatoes were generally stressed in the field."

"We usually start the first germination treatment a month into storage, but shouldn't we start right away for some varieties?"

"Underwater weights have also been higher. All in all, we'll have to bear these quality problems in mind."
Still, he is optimistic about the new local potato season.

Jurgen Duthoo:
"We recently started using a new ERP system and, thus, can improve efficiency and provide even better client service."

"Fortunately, we use solar energy to a large extent, which somewhat reduces energy costs."

"Not every grower or packer is that lucky. However, we have to have potatoes available 52 weeks a year, so storage is impossible for us."

"The only question is how much of the rising costs can be passed on in the chain. That also has its limit, though, so this next season's margins are incredibly tight."

"It will become essential to make good agreements with all chain parties in that regard so that everyone can earn a living."
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