Australia: Free market has growers spitting chips

It has been a tumultuous couple of years for the Western Australian potato industry, with many growers concerned about the industry’s future following deregulation and the closure of a major processing plant. On September 6, State Parliament passed the Marketing of Potatoes Amendment and Repeal Bill 2016 which cemented the abolition of the Potato Marketing Corporation of WA (PMC), ending the 70-year-old regulated market in WA. While the PMC will end at the start of next year, Friday, September 30, marks the end of potatoes being covered by the regulated market, putting growers under pressure to finish harvest by the deadline in order to receive the fixed agreed price for their fresh potatoes. More