Lockdown had led to a sudden shift from a crop shortfall following weather challenges last season to a surplus for potato giant McCain, as it lost 50 per cent of sales overnight. The last 10 years have thrown up multiple climate challenges for potato growers and McCain was looking to help create certainty for farmers and build supply chain resilience, reports Alex Black, a business reporter at Farmers Guardian in the UK.
Daniel Metheringham, McCain head of agriculture, told Alex: “This time last year we were sat in the midst of a crop crisis because of weather volatility. When we hit Covid-19, all of a sudden we went from a crop shortfall to a crop surplus.” Mr Metheringham said 50 per cent of sales had shut down overnight.
And when the hospitality closure hit McCain before planting they were able to speak with growers about the challenges they faced. The McCain farmer pledge, an investment of £25m in the British potato industry, was focused on trying to build certainty for farmers facing weather volatility. Mr Metheringham said there were reasons to be positive, with sales better than expected.
Source: Farming UK. Read the full report here