Potato Days UK, a brand new two-day agricultural event will be held next year at Nocton in Lincolnshire – at the heart of the Dyson Farming business. Aimed primarily at UK and Irish farmers and growers, Potato Days UK will attract exhibitors from across the potato production value chain.
Potato Days UK is made by the DLG which has global reach through its combination of shows and trade fairs. DLG’s experience in this sector is significant. DLG has been involved in potato events for several years in countries such as Germany, Netherlands, Turkey and Ukraine.
Bringing technical and exhibitor stands with in-field demonstrations of harvesting, handling and cultivation equipment, these popular events attract many thousands of professional visitors and exhibitors from across Europe each year.
Potato Days UK, which will take place on 4 and 5 September 2024, will be a free-to-attend event and offers visitors a unique and immersive opportunity to engage with the industry.
Dr. Lars Huf of the DLG said “We have listened carefully to the market and are delighted to bring Potato Days to Lincolnshire. Nocton Farm is an ideal location, accessible from across the UK and Ireland, and an excellent showcase for many aspects of innovative, research-led, arable farming.
We are very pleased to be working with key industry partners, including GB Potatoes, and are confident that this is going to be an exciting and successful new event“.
Key features of Potato Days are live, field-scale, demonstrations of cultivation, harvesting and crop handling, working on around 15 ha of crops that are being specially grown for the event. In addition to indoor and outdoor exhibitor stands, trial plots showing new varieties and agronomy practices.
A particular focus on agritech, research and innovation will run through the event, with a programme of talks, presentations and networking opportunities taking place over both days.
“As well as being able to see the latest potato growing machinery at work, visitors will be able to learn about the latest trends and issues affecting the industry. Potato Days will offer an ideal knowledge exchange and learning opportunity for all our visitors“ he added.
The UK is the fourth largest potato grower in Europe after Germany, France and the Netherlands with an area of 137,000 ha, which corresponds to a harvest of 5.5 million tons. Although the UK has always had a strong potato market.
Further processing of potatoes
Potato chips, known as chips in the UK, are another popular British food. While the sales value of potato chips in the UK has risen slightly over the last decade, another potato category has seen an even greater increase. Between 2008 and 2018, the sales value of frozen potato products such as chips increased by over £100 million. In general, the sale of processed and preserved potatoes in the UK has increased steadily in recent years. In 2020, the sales value of processed and preserved potatoes amounted to around £1.13 billion.
Retail and trade
Exports of potatoes from the UK increased until 2019 and then fell by 36% in the following two years In 2021, the export value of potatoes from the UK was around £91 million. Of all retail sales of potatoes in the UK, potato chips accounted for the most sales. This was closely followed by fresh potatoes and then pre-packed fresh products. The leading brand for frozen potato products in the UK was Any McCain.
Potato consumption in the United Kingdom
In 2019/2020, the average UK consumer spent around 1.28 pounds per week on fresh and processed potato products. Of this, 46 pence is spent on potato chips and 37 pence on chips. In the UK, over 14 million people consume frozen potato chips at least once a week, highlighting the importance of this product to the UK potato market.