Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Monday 29 May 2017

Rebel spuds join the flight to Russia

Surplus potatoes from Ireland are being shipped to Russia, with prices strengthening last month. Inspecting the spuds prior to shipping were Philip Meade, Chris McKeever and Robert Devlin
Surplus potatoes from Ireland are being shipped to Russia, with prices strengthening last month. Inspecting the spuds prior to shipping were Philip Meade, Chris McKeever and Robert Devlin
Darragh McCullough

Darragh McCullough

Four hundred years after Sir Walter Raleigh landed the first consignment in Ireland through the Cork port of Youghal, the humble spud is taking to the waves once again from the Rebel County.

Following on from the success of the previous deliveries of Irish potatoes to Russia by Meade Potato Company last month, another 2,500t load is heading for St Petersburg this week.

The ship will carry potatoes from growers in Cork and Kerry who contacted Meade Potato Company in December about the possibility of exporting their surplus produce.

Prices have strengthened in the interim, with growers securing firm prices for the potatoes in this consignment. They are almost double what was on offer just two months ago.

An added incentive is the risk-free nature of the deal from growers' point of view, since they are paid on delivery.

A spokesman for Meade's said that they had encountered no problems so far in relation to payment for the exports from its Russian buyers.

This week's sailing from Dundalk port will include produce from Cork, Kerry, Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Meath, Louth and Dublin.

Roosters will make up the bulk of the shipment.

When quizzed on whether this could become a regular outlet for Irish produce, the spokesman said there could be potential in the outlet for future sales.

A third shipment has already been confirmed for this month, and the company are now taking orders.

The fact boats regularly transport fertiliser and timber from the Baltic Sea region to Ireland helps make the venture economically feasible, as shippers seek backloads for return trips.

Indo Farming