Dutch potato farmers expect to lift more than 5 billion kilos of ware and seed potatoes in 2004, 11 percent more than in 2003. In 2003 the potato crop was substantially smaller because of the dry summer. The expected potato crop in 2004 is comparable with the average over the last ten years.
The total crop of seed onions this year will be nearly one and half times as big as last year. This means that more than 1 billion kilos of seed onions will be lifted. This is an exceptionally high level, brought about by a substantial expansion in the area of land planted with onions and high yields per hectare.
Potato crop around average
According to Statistics Netherlands, the potato crop in 2004 will be comparable with the average for the last ten years. The yield per hectare is 9 percent higher than last year. The area planted with ware and seed potatoes is 3 percent larger than last year at 113 thousand hectares. Potato crops were larger in four years out of the last ten, and smaller in six years. The main potato producing provinces are Flevoland, Zeeland and North Brabant, each accounting for nearly 1 billion kilos.
Many potatoes grown on clay
This year’s potato crop is 14 percent larger than that of last year. The yield per hectare increased by 10 percent to 46 thousand kilos. Seed potatoes account for a large part of potatoes grown on clay soil. Sandy and peaty soil also gave more potatoes per hectare than in 2003, but slightly fewer compared with the five-year average. Fewer and fewer seed potatoes are grown on sandy and peaty soil.
Record crop of seed onions
The area of seed onions has increased for the fourth successive year. In 2004 it exceeded 20 thousand hectares for the first time. This is over 20 percent more land than in 2003. Statistics Netherlands expect s the yield per hectare to rise by one fifth to 59 thousand kilos. For the first time since the survey began, farmers will harvest more than 1 billion kilos of onions in 2004, 47 percent more than in 2003.
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