«There are no preconditions for the rise of potato prices in the current season» — so the experts and the owners of the farms have expressed themselves at the beginning of the year. What happened and why does potential prices increase by 43% available in the last week? Read our material.
Despite last year's good harvest and increase in potato imports from Belarus and the Russian Federation in 2019 to a record 250 thousand tons, wholesale prices for potatoes in recent weeks have risen to 8–10 UAH/kg. The irregular supply of one of the most common crops is connected with the sanitary and epidemiological situation in the country and the announcement of quarantine. Due to the reduced supply of potatoes in retail chains and the complicated logistics in the western regions, farmers are forced to raise the price of potatoes.
In fact, prices for root crops are changing every year. According to Director of «Agriko Ukraine», Mykola Gordiychuk, pricing for potatoes in Ukraine depends on several factors, including weather and climate change. «If there is a drought and not enough moisture, it will inevitably affect the yield and price, in the same way», — says Gordiychuk. In addition, according to experts, the cost of potatoes depends on the stores of the previous season.
Director of Ltd. Oleksandr A. Sinenko, O. Sinenko has also shared his thoughts on the current situation on the market. One of the most famous potato growers and one of the largest potato exporters in Ukraine claims that the main reason for the unstable price of potatoes is the constant change in the foreign exchange rate.
«Fertilizers, all liquids, and preparations — mainly, all of them depend on the foreign exchange rate», — says the specialist. Moreover, because of inflation and the constant fluctuation of the course, another problem arises — the lack of skilled professionals and the ability to pay them decent wages.
Even though the price of potatoes in Ukraine is now almost 50% higher than in the same period the previous year, experts are convinced that the situation will stabilize by the autumn of the current year. Wholesalers are of the same opinion — they hope that after improving the logistics situation in the western regions, prices for potatoes will drop to their usual level.
However, the forecasts of Ukrainian manufacturers are not so optimistic. According to them, the stocks of quality potatoes are gradually ending, and therefore the demand for the most widespread crop will only grow. Due to this, the price will increase.
We can already see how small-scale farming is refusing to grow potatoes. The threatening crises, the volatile foreign exchange rate, and the adverse effects of the coronavirus pandemic on agrarian companies, of course, lead to a crisis in the potato industry of Ukraine.
It should be noted that EastFruit experts predicted that, due to the warm winter and sunny early spring, early potatoes could ripen in April, 15–20 days earlier than usual. It means that until the end of April, early Ukrainian potatoes may appear on the market.
The MIZEZ editorial team