The Producers Organization for Consumption Potatoes (POC) thinks that it would greatly strengthen the position of growers if the overtones or ‘free potatoes’ were not already announced in advance to the same buyer with which the contract part was concluded.
According to the POC, it is much more sensible not to make any agreements for the overtones when the contract is concluded and to actually see these potatoes as free potatoes. ‘In this way, as a grower, you can try to get the most out of the market. And then the buyers have to go the extra mile to get hold of those potatoes’, POC reports.
For the individual grower, this can provide an advantage in a tight market by choosing the highest bidder customer. In a market situation with an oversupply, it will probably make little difference, according to the POC. ‘Keeping the overtones free always has an influence for the entire sector, because it probably concerns 15 to 25 percent of the total harvest in a year.’
Keep overtone free
Since a large part of these overtones have so far been promised to the contracting party in advance, this has a negative impact on the market for the grower. ‘When the price on the free market starts to rise, the large volume of contracted and meal potatoes means that the buyers do not have to buy free potatoes at that time, so that the price does not rise further. By keeping the overtones free, buyers have to buy free potatoes sooner and the price can rise sooner. ‘
By leaving the destination in the dark at the time of contracting, the overtones become part of the ‘sleeping giant’ that the POC likes to see hanging above the market. This sleeping giant is then a large group of growers who, through membership of the POC, can inform each other and, if necessary, agree on a certain direction in the market together and a large amount of potatoes, of which it is not yet known which direction they will go.
Influence on the market
‘If we can achieve this together, growers will not have to wait patiently in all circumstances to see what will happen, because you alone have no influence on the market.’ By now playing the game together in the POC, growers can indeed have influence on the market, ‘says the organization.
This will be all the more interesting if the POC is followed in the other EU5 countries, at least in Belgium, France and Germany. Those countries are already looking with great interest at the POC in the Netherlands. Membership does not depend on company size and is 100 euros.