The total 2019 planted GB potato area is estimated at 118.95 kilohectares, putting the area one per cent higher than last year and represents the GB area covered by more than 90 per cent of producers, according to AHDB.
Although the estimate shows a slight increase in area year-on-year, this remains one of the lowest on record, AHDB says.
“Much of the increase seen in area has been from small growers increasing their area, a decision likely driven in part by the high priced year of 2018.”
The top ten most widely grown varieties account for more than 40 per cent of the overall GB area planted to potatoes, as it did last year.
This is made up of varieties from all sectors.
The top three varieties – Maris Piper, Markies and Maris Peer have held their positions.
Maris Piper showed an increase of 6.5 per cent from 2018 plantings, accounting for 13.5 per cent of the GB planted potato area.
In contrast, Maris Peer has fallen by 24.7 per cent year-on-year. This brings the total GB area planted to Maris Peer to the lowest since 2010, says AHDB.
“There have been reports that demand for salad potatoes has been dropping slightly and this could be some of the driver. Also Maris Peer is being replaced by newer varieties like Jazzy and Jelly, both experiencing over 20 per cent increase in planted area.”
Lady Rosetta has been overtaken by Taurus as the most widely grown crisping variety at 3.3K ha.
Taurus has become a popular crisping variety due to its tolerance to PCN and decent storability.
Although much further down the list, VR808 has also seen a large year-on-year increase in area, the largest of all (as a percentage) at 59 per cent, according to AHDB.