Friday, 20 November 2020
At a glance
- Free-buy markets experienced a downturn in trade this week, with most overall demand met by contracted material.
- Markets have seen demand dampened by the coronavirus pandemic, with Christmas parties this year restricted by government guidelines.
- Chipping markets have seen demand hit by the wetter weather, seasonal declines and reduced footfall amid lockdown measures, with competition from other takeaway restaurants.
- Persistent wet weather has paused lifting for some still clearing, particularly pockets of the East, Northern regions and some Scottish areas.
- Packing for retail seems to have found its demand level for the lockdown so far, not changing week-on-week.
- Maris Piper continues to receive a premium above other varieties, with prices holding firm from last week. Demand has been seen for this variety ahead of most other whites.
- There has been reports of some tonnages moving between stores ahead of the Christmas demand, with best quality a key factor in this.
- Demand for reds is firming, with prices strengthening slightly from the previous week.
- Demand for salads has been relatively muted with the exception of absolute best quality supplies. The closure of ‘sit-down’ meal occasions is a factor.
- Most chip shop trade orders have been on a repeat basis from last week, with prices unchanged. The wetter weather has reportedly had an impact on footfall levels to some fish and chip shops. Seasonal downturn for demand continues.
- There were anecdotal reports of some better demand from Wales, following the end of the ‘fire-break’ lockdown. Some suggest this could be an element of restocking rather than a solid level of demand.
- As a result of the poorer demand levels reported across the West, we are unable to publish variety specific prices this week and instead have included a ‘whites’ price.
- Some quality issues have been reported where supplies have been lifted wet and stored; some skin blemish issues appearing in a small number of Maris Piper samples.
- The processing trade has seen quieter levels of demand, with free-buy prices declining slightly from last week. Much of this demand is able to be met using contracted supplies.
- An increase in freshly lifted supplies moving off the field straight to peeling markets was reported, with storage a risk for quality.
- Retail demand for processing supplies seems to have found its level over recent weeks, with no movements in demand.
- We are unable to publish export prices this week, due to data thresholds unable to be met.
- Despite this, anecdotal reports suggest export movement continues to occur to the Canary Islands in steady volumes.
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