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Price of potatoes drops by almost a third in one year

Good harvest means bigger supply and lower prices for spud-lovers.

Image: Paul Seheult/Eye Ubiquitous/Press Association Images

THE PRICE OF potatoes dropped significantly in the year up to this October.

The Central Statistics Office has released its annual agricultural output price index – those goods produced on Ireland’s farms – and noted a 28.8 per cent drop for potatoes year-on-year.

Statistician Susan O’Connor told TheJournal.ie that the price would have been abnormally high in September of last year when supply of potatoes was down but demand still high.

However, after this year’s good harvest, the supply of potatoes on the market is much higher and that’s why the price has “stabilised”.

There is some fluctuation between months as the price index is based on both the early and main crop. There is an early harvest (May, June onwards) and a later one, which this year really started to show in the months of August and September. “It was a bit later alright, but the supply didn’t suffer the same as last year,” said O’Connor.

Cereal prices also stabilised to a similar extent and were 28.2 per cent down in October 2013 on the September of last year.

The agricultural price input index (costs of agriculture) recorded a minor drop of 1.4 per cent when October 2013 was compared with September 2013. The output index increased by half a per cent. This means that the trade index increased by 2 per cent in October 2013.

Overall, on a year-on-year basis, the agricultural output price index was up 4.5 per cent in October 2013 compared with the same time last year, and the input price index was down 2.6 per cent.

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Milk and wool prices recorded particularly strong increases, by 20 per cent and 10.8 per cent.

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