Comment: Markets remain largely unchanged this week. Retail trade is steady, albeit much slower than this period last year when level five restrictions were in place.

Trade for the processing sector is variable at present, but it is hoped this will improve, with restrictions likely to ease shortly.

Peeling material has been quoted in the region of €200/t. The availability of seed potato is a huge concern for growers and lobbying efforts continue to devise a two-way model for trade between the EU and the UK.

In the UK, reports suggest that movement of Marris Piper over the holiday period has been slightly better than they anticipated. Quality issues are reported on many samples, including lifting damage and bruising, but also hollow heart.

Overall, across Europe, the avoidance of strict lockdowns in most countries is seen as a positive factor for markets. Despite difficulties with transport, exports to the east appear to be increasing, particularly from Germany.