EU Calls on to Reduce the Areas under Potatoes by 15%
The North-Western European Potato Growers (NEPG) has called on European growers to cut their planted areas by 15% in 2021. Fruit-inform, referencing Freshplaza, writes that the countries of the European Union (EU) have reacted differently to this call.
For example, the Dutch potato sector is very reluctant to respond to such a proposal.
“This reduction will significantly affect potato farmers. However, growing potatoes at a loss also doesn’t benefit anyone. A 15% reduction in acreage does not guarantee a good market situation,” says Keimpe van der Heide, board member of the Dutch Agricultural Union (NAV).
Belgium welcomed the reduction in planted areas.
“We plant potatoes in February and March. At that time, COVID-19 was not yet as relevant. However, the pandemic soon created serious pressure on the industrial potato market. Supply far outstripped demand, resulting in lower prices,” noted Warnez Potatoes spokesman Jeffrey Delber said, emphasising that in such a situation, reducing acreage seems to be a wise decision.
In Germany, it is believed that it is enough to reduce the area by only 10-12%.
“Reducing the area under potatoes by 15% is unrealistic. As far as we know, the area needs to be reduced by only 10-12%,” says Karl-Josef Dammer, manager of the German potato trading company Weuthen.
He is also confident that potato sowing in the coming year will decline, even if these strict measures are not implemented.
In France, some producers find it difficult to reduce their acreage. Not all French manufacturers will follow NEPG’s advice. This decision depends on their situation and target market.