The UK potato harvest has once again been affected by wet weather, as there has been widespread rainfall in recent weeks. The AHDB reported that while 77% of the total Great Britain potato area had been lifted by 20 October, some growers were having to contend with waterlogged fields after last month’s storms. Progress was particularly slow in the north east and north west, where 40% and 59% of the crop respectively had been lifted.
According to the Met Office, the United Kingdom experienced the fifth-wettest October since 1862 last month. Key processors McCain and Lamb Weston both spoke of challenging conditions in East Anglia, parts of which saw close to 200% of their usual average rainfall in October. However, both companies said their growers had managed to already get most of the crop out of the ground.
“Despite the climatic challenges and added impact of Covid-19, we’re pleased that our farmers have already been able to harvest over 90% of the crop,” said McCain GB & Ireland agriculture director Daniel Metheringham. “This year, I am confident our farmers will harvest the majority of potatoes and whilst yields are marginally down, the quality of the crop is good.”