Ireland facing potato crisis as frigid weather grips nation

As Ireland faces the prospect of ten more days of freezing temperatures, potato farmers in Ireland are facing a very uncertain future as they can’t harvest their crops.

Between the floods around the country in November and the subsequent freeze in December and now January, potato farmers have been left frustrated as either water or ice has prevented them from getting potatoes out of the ground, and that could result in a loss of around €15 ($21.6) million to Irish potato farmers.

Thomas Carpenter, the National Potato Committee Vice-Chairman of the Irish Farmers Association (IFA), said that 6,000 acres of potato files have been unharvested because of the inclement weather.

"The losses will result in a 20% reduction in marketable produce and retailers must respond immediately by paying a viable price to producers for crop in store," said Carpenter.

The IFA is also concerned the frost could kill up to 75 per cent of the potato crops currently sitting in Irish fields.

The reduced supply could result in a hike in prices for potatoes, and Ireland’s signature vegetable is not the only crop suffering.

Carrots, celery, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower crops are also unharvested in recent weeks as the freezing temperatures continue.

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