Information about the fact that Russia is running out of potatoes and its own reserves will not be enough until spring, the Accounting Chamber announced. A little earlier, in December, experts from the Institute for Agricultural Market Studies (IKAR) announced an increase in the cost of potatoes in 2018. According to them, the reason for the rise in price will be that stocks of domestic potatoes will run out earlier than usual.
What is the situation in Pskov, is there enough potatoes and how much will it cost, the Business Information Center found out. Representative questions were answered by a representative of one of the city’s largest vegetable bases.
Where did the potato sold on the Pskov markets grow?
- The main suppliers of potatoes for Pskov are traditionally local farmers. Basically, these are Pechora and Porkhov districts. We have been working with the same farmers for many years and prefer to take potatoes only from them. So we always know what kind of product it is, what quality it is.
Will there be enough local farmers to feed Pskov?
- While there is no talk of a deficit, prices are also so far predictable. The farmers have stocks, they are still trading freely, for two months there will definitely be enough. But soon the period will begin when they will begin to "hold" their stocks. The reason is simple: in spring, prices are higher, and who does not want to sell their products more expensive.
And will farmers keep the crop until spring?
- The potatoes are now well stored. The fact is that every farmer who sells such volumes has modern equipped warehouses, they maintain the necessary humidity and temperature. People learn and invest in their production.
How much can the price of potatoes grow and when to wait for a rise in price?
- Forecasts are quite difficult to make, for example, the price may rise now in the wake of news that the potato is over, or it may not start ...
I will tell you how this usually happens, using the example of last year's prices. During the harvesting period, potatoes cost about 10 rubles per kilogram (keep in mind that these are wholesale prices, the retail price is three rubles higher). As soon as the digging period ends and we buy potatoes that are already stored, the wholesale price immediately rises to 12 rubles, which means that the retail price is about 14-15 rubles. The next period of price growth - a month before the new year, the price rises to 14 rubles, at retail - 17-19 rubles. So far this year, everything happens according to this scenario. The next price increase usually begins in February, and now it is no longer limited to a one-time increase - since February, the price of potatoes has been steadily increasing. Somewhere by April, potatoes double their price from the original, but this is not a “ceiling”. Last year, retail prices reached 30 rubles per kilogram at some retail outlets in the city.
What to do when the local potato runs out?
- For example, last year, with local farmers, potatoes ran out in early May. What to do? Search for new suppliers. They brought potatoes from Belarus and Udmurtia. Strange, but with all the Pskov’s love for everything Belarusian, potatoes from there are not popular, they buy it very reluctantly.
How much does the “imported” potato cost?
- Yes, it costs about as much as the local one. Initially, its price is much lower, because the volumes are completely different. But multiple resale and transportation costs equalize its final price with local products.
For reference: according to Pskovstat, in December a kilogram of potato in Pskov stores cost 19-20 rubles. Note that in stores they sell most often farm locally produced potatoes.