Food suppliers and processors in Northern Ireland could be heading for a clash with supermarkets over the soaring cost of potatoes. One food processing firm told Business Telegraph the cost of buying potatoes to make its products had increased from £120 per tonne in 2017 to almost £300 per tonne this month.
Following one of the hottest summers on record, Europe is experiencing a shortage of vegetables, ending a traditional source of cheaper produce for many food processors here. In the Republic some potato growers have reported that their crop is 25% down, with the rising cost of seed resulting in a dip in the volumes being planted. It’s not just the volume that has dropped, the size of the potatoes is also much smaller.
The impact of the shortage is expected to become more pronounced through the winter months.