The ESA Potato Section (SPO) addresses seed potatoes as regulated by the EU Seed Marketing Directive for seed potatoes (2002/56).
The EU covers approximately 1.7 million hectares of potatoes. Potato seed is produced on approximately 180.000 hectares.
There are more than 2600 potato varieties listed in the European Common Catalogue. As 95% of the potato breeding companies are located in the EU 28, also the vast majority of the known potato varieties have their origin in this part of the world.
The main markets are table, French fries, crisps and starch. However, in the past decades several smaller markets were established, for example, for organic potatoes, fast food, export and salads.
The SPO section developed a Factsheet on Potatoes which contains more information on key production figures, research and development, environmental aspects as well as information on the ESA company members active in this crop.