NFU takes up issue of potato growers' "severe" payment deductions

The NFU has written to processors and packers calling for clarity and transparency in the supply chain after potato growers reported deductions of up to 30% being made to payments with little or no explanation.

Image: Make It Kenya Photo / Stuart Price (public domain)
Image: Make It Kenya Photo / Stuart Price (public domain)

The NFU is calling for full, itemised breakdowns of deductions to be made available within 48 hours.

Its potato forum chairman Alex Godfrey said the current situation could cause long-term harm to the sector, adding: "Farmers are telling us that this situation is getting worse, not better."

He explained: "Farmers are becoming more and more frustrated at the scale of the problem, with some processors and packers offering little or no supporting data to explain the reduction in payment. Growers then often wait weeks before being told of the deductions. This can’t continue. Growers must be given clarity and transparency if they are expected to improve efficiencies and production on farm."

Potatoes that do not meet the specification can be used for a secondary purpose such as in added-value processed or prepared food, without the grower being paid - a practice growers have expressed concern over.

Godfrey added: "Packing businesses have diversified to enable them to use more of the crop and produce products such as chilled mash or wedges. There needs to be recognition of the value of the crop used for this purpose and a reasonable reward for growers."

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

What challenges and opportunities lie in store for tomato growers?

What challenges and opportunities lie in store for tomato growers?

The British Tomato Growers Association (TGA) conference heard a range of perspectives on what changes lie in store for the sector and how to anticipate them.

Buoyant demand for UK apples but frost and labour remain concerns

Buoyant demand for UK apples but frost and labour remain concerns

As the British apple season begins, English Apples & Pears (EAP) is warning that growers will feel the effects of both a late frost in spring and also constrained labour supply.

Tomorrow's tractors

Tomorrow's tractors

These machines have advanced rapidly over recent years but what does the future hold? Sally Drury looks ahead.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Professor Geoffrey Dixon

GreenGene International chair Geoff Dixon on the business of fresh produce production

Read Professor Geoffrey Dixon