Retail trade remains static and similar to 2019 levels. The first early Queens are coming on to the market this week in the southeast, which is about two weeks earlier than this time last year.

There are reports of frost damage on the earliest-sown crops. Homeguard and Premier continue to clear and most growers should be finished in the next 10 days. Sales are reported to be much slower than last year.

Processing trade remains buoyant as we approach the peak holiday period. The price of peeling material is in the region of €180/t. There is good demand for top-quality main-crop material.

Across Europe, export markets are reported to be much quieter than previously.

In many countries, preliminary figures suggest that planting figures have remained quite static.

In the UK, there has been better movement of contracts this week and “a few more free buy orders”, but buyers have raised quality standards. Bruising and wireworm have been a major cause of rejection in the south.