Fruits and vegetables were in stable demand and were sold at good prices in winter. We have observed a sharp change in the situation since mid-March, in fact, since the beginning of quarantine: the product experienced a sudden surge in demand, and then the same sudden drop in consumer interest. This characterization of the state of affairs in the market was given by Greg Johnson, director of marketing agency development Blue Book Services.
Johnson believes that no product demonstrates this “pandemic” effect as clearly as potatoes, whose average price has dropped by about half from early March as demand for the product plummeted after restaurants, schools and other institutions closed.
Data presented on the IRI platform, show that potatoes in the retail trade in the USA in 2019 increased in price by 33 percent, while sales increased by 21 percent, but even this cannot compensate for the current drop in demand, and it is not clear what will happen next.
Raul Lopez, a specialist at Agtools Inc.’s analytical service, notes that, unlike in previous years, when the price of potatoes was very stable and almost predictable, 2020 promises to be an exceptional year: making forecasts is still too difficult.
FOB prices (including travel and insurance costs) in Idaho this year reflect a "pandemic" effect. From January to mid-March, the price remained at $ 20+ per box (4 kg), which is significantly higher than in 54. When the quarantine measures began, the price dropped to $ 2019. Now (literally from the end of May) we can see a slight recovery with an upward trend that may continue as the economy resumes and restaurants open.