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Wholesale prices for potatoes decreased in Moldova

At the end of February, potatoes fell in price by 0.2-0.5 lei/kg at the Moldovan wholesale fruit and vegetable market. According to EastFruit price monitoring data, the average price does not exceed 3 lei/kg and the maximum price is 3.5 lei/kg ($0.20/kg).

Traders believe currently there are no prerequisites for strengthening prices for potatoes in the domestic market. This is a shocking conclusion considering this time last year, wholesale prices for potatoes in Moldova were 30-40% higher. Moreover, throughout March 2020, their stable growth was noted by $0.01-0.03/kg per week.

Market operators consider the stable imports of potatoes from neighbouring Romania to be the main factor ensuring the constancy and even slight regression of prices in late winter – early spring 2021. In January-February, prices for Romanian potatoes of good quality were reliably kept in the range of 3.5-4.0 lei/kg ($0.20-0.22/kg). They remained at the level of prices for local potatoes of average and above-average quality. Yet, by the end of February, the stocks of such products at large Moldovan vegetable farms ran out. Taking this into account, one might assume that prices for high-quality imported potatoes would start to rise. However, the situation is different.

Read also: In Moldova, price for Moldova variety grapes rose due to demand in Romania

Traders agree that the low effective demand for supermarket quality potatoes dictates maximum prices in the range of 4.0-4.2 lei/kg ($0.22-0.24/kg). If they jump higher, demand may decrease even more.

Moreover, there is an alternative. The supply of low-quality locally produced potatoes in the northern regions of Moldova is still large. As a result, some wholesalers said they had to reduce prices for potatoes of mediocre quality to 2.7-2.8 lei/kg ($0.15-0.16/kg) in early March.


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