Domestic market update - 06 March 2020

Friday, 6 March 2020

Quality continues to split market

Over the past month continued bad weather has meant that fieldwork has been delayed with growers unable to get out onto the land. On areas with lighter soils some planting has taken place, where weather allowed, but overall early planting is behind “normal pace” for this point in the season. Delays to early planting could extend the season, which could lend some support to prices. However, with ample supplies of frying material on the continent, upward movement could be limited.

Packhouses continue to rely on contracted supplies where possible, with most describing free-buy trade as “steady” over the past month. Despite this, there is a good demand for best quality supplies and prices have remained firm for good quality loads with high baker content. Scottish supplies continue to flow down into England, with limited local demand forcing growers to look elsewhere.

In the bagged chipping market, trade has slowed down with limited demand from chip shops. There are continual difficulties matching up end users with appropriate quality at a price which will incentivise movement from store. With this in mind, the top end of the market remains firm, with lower quality material harder to shift unless it is significantly discounted.

In the processing market there continues to be a steady peeling trade, with ample quantities of lower quality supplies needing to find a home. While not a current issue, a further spread of coronavirus could impact on demand for peeling quality material later in the season should schools need to close.

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