International seed breeders and exporters sharing the Potato Council stand enjoyed a very busy time at this year’s Potato Europe (Tournai, Belgium, September 7-8).
"The record-breaking 2011 seed potato export season reflects our success in this sector," said David Murdie, CEO for Grampian Growers, who was on the stand for the first time this year. "The pavilion attracted serious potential customers from early on and we made excellent contacts. As a result, we expect our exports to really expand next year."
Following on the heels of the international success at this year’s Fruit Logistica, the Potato Council stand at Potato Europe attracted more than 200 direct industry enquiries for seed and ware potatoes in addition to developing links with government officials from potential importers such as Turkey.
"The stand was bustling with growers and importers from early on the first day," says Potato Council head of seed and export Mark Prentice. "Requests for information on seed and ware potatoes were received from a wide range of countries including Australia, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Turkey, in addition to Europe."
Mr Prentice highlighted the importance of the positive PR programme that had generated growing interest in high health seed grown specifically in Britain for overseas markets.
"There is growing appreciation for the quality of seed potatoes cultivated in Britain’s cool, temperate climate, using the most modern equipment to ensure high quality is maintained during storage. In addition, importers really appreciate varieties specifically grown to suit their particular climate and market."
Sophie Lock, Seed & Export Executive for Potato Council further added: "Potato Europe continues to prove a worthwhile event to attend for our breeders and exporters, who once again reported their participation as overwhelmingly worthwhile for promoting the benefits of our seed to overseas markets."