Hospitality venues could see a rise in the price of potatoes after last week’s heatwave potentially damaged the quality of some crop, a supplier has warned.
As Jungmin Seo reports for The Caterer, Austen Dack, marketing manager of Isle of Ely Produce in Cambridgeshire, which supplies over two million bags of potatoes into fish and chip shops and restaurants, said the performance of later second earlies and true maincrop varieties of potato was “very much in the balance”.
He added: “Mature unirrigated crops have died back very quickly recently due to the high temperatures.” But he said potatoes that had matured or were close to maturity before the onset of extreme weather last week were “generally considered to be good”.
He warned rainfall could also cause damage, because this would disrupt the dry matter of the potato, which determines how well it fries. “The public might have to get used to a smaller chip, the chip shop might have to get used to a mixed bag and pay[ing] a bit more. It’s not quite a crisis, but it’s not looking brilliant either.”