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UK potato sector sees improvement amid challenges

The UK potato sector is experiencing a better year, with prices expected to remain high due to reduced planting in 2022 and 2023, as Robert Doig from Caledonia Potatoes explained to FreshPlaza’s Nichola McGregor. Despite a previous shortage, growers are optimistic due to favorable growing conditions in Scotland. However, the sector faces challenges from Brexit, high energy costs, labor shortages, and inflation. Additionally, the closure of the European market post-Brexit has impacted seed growers, with no new markets opening for Scottish seed potatoes. Despite these challenges, there are opportunities for growth, particularly in Northern Ireland.
Source: FreshPlaza.

Five Guys celebrates 10-Year UK anniversary with merchandise collection

Summary: To celebrate its 10-year UK anniversary, American burger brand Five Guys is releasing the second collection of its merchandise line. The collection includes a reversible bucket hat, sliders, a summer co-ord set, new hoodie designs, and t-shirts. The photoshoot for the collection was conducted at a Nottinghamshire farm, one of Five Guys’ trusted potato suppliers, highlighting the brand’s commitment to fresh produce. Known for their salted and Cajun-style options, Five Guys use ‘Innovator’ potatoes for their cult-favourite fries.
Source: London Post. See cover image

Total Canadian potato storage holdings down

As of July 1, 2023, total Canadian Potato Storage Holdings are reported to be down 34.9% over 2022 numbers for the same period, and lower than the 3-yr. average. Although shipments for June were lower than May they are still above the average for the month since recording started in 2020 of the July holdings. Fresh and processing potato inventories continue to move steadily and the seed sector inventory is pretty much depleted as would be expected at this time of year. All provinces across the country are reporting positively about the crop.
Source: United Potato Growers of Canada (UPGC).

Tajikistan farmers expect to harvest 1.1 million tons of potatoes in 2023

Tajikistan’s Ministry of Agriculture projects a harvest of about 1.1 million tons of potatoes in 2023, with potato cultivation spanning almost all cities and regions. The area dedicated to potato farming has increased by 2,474.5 hectares from the previous year, totaling 58,566.3 hectares. Currently, the soil and seed potatoes are being prepared for re-sowing. It is expected that the harvest will be high if the weather conditions remain favorable.
Source: East-Fruit.

Veg of Lund to distribute DUG potato drink in Poland

Veg of Lund is expanding to the Polish market through a distributor business model, partnering with regional partner Hudson NAS. The partnership will focus on food manufacturing, cafés, and retail chains, promoting the European patented DUG potato drink. This move aligns with Veg of Lund’s updated commercial strategy, which emphasizes distributor and license partnerships as key growth drivers. Hudson NAS, based in Łódź, brings extensive expertise and experience in the FMCG sector.
Source: Veg of Lund.

Yukon Gold potato prices soar in Canada amid potential shortage

Prices for Yukon Gold potatoes from Ontario and Quebec in Canada are experiencing a significant increase, with costs reaching over $40 in recent weeks. Richard Donsky of Mister Produce attributes the price hike to a potential shortage, inflation, and possibly increased exports to the U.S. While consumers may switch to other potato varieties due to the high prices, Donsky predicts the situation will remain challenging until the fall.
Source: FreshPlaza.

Carbon Robotics’ LaserWeeder wins ‘Best AI-based Solution for Agriculture’ award

Carbon Robotics’ LaserWeeder™ has been named the “Best AI-based Solution for Agriculture” in the sixth annual AI Breakthrough Awards. The LaserWeeder, the first commercially available laser weeding robot, uses AI deep learning, computer vision, robotics, and lasers to control weeds with high precision. It can eliminate up to 99% of weeds and has reduced weed control costs by up to 80% for growers. The AI Breakthrough Awards recognize leading companies and technologies in the global AI market.
Source: Business Wire

Cover image: Five Guys photoshoot. Credit London Post

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