Chip potato harvest continues to ramp up in central Florida. Movement is steady. Quality is good. The area has been extremely dry this year. As a result, yields on sandy ground are “only average.” Yields on heavier ground are reported to be good. Crop quality is excellent. The biggest challenge is finding trucks to move the potatoes. Truck supplies are tight in all parts of the country. Florida always seems to suffer most when there is a truck shortage.
Unseasonably warm weather is allowing planting to progress rapidly in northern growing areas. Some areas that were only starting to plant a year ago have been able to finish planting this year. The southwest Michigan crop is 20%-25% planted. If crops progress normally, the early planting season could cause chip potato supplies to back up during July and August.
US packers shipped 1.708 million cwt of table potatoes during the week ending April 3, 2021. That is down from 1.821 million cwt a year earlier. Michigan packers shipped 51,393 cwt of potatoes during the week ending April 3, 2021. That is down from 68,400 cwt during the same week in 2020. Last week’s Michigan shipments were 67.6% Russets, 28.9% Yellow varieties, and 3.5% Round White potatoes.
Michigan packers are selling size A Russets in 10# bags for mostly $12.50 per 50# bale, unchanged from last week. Wisconsin packers are selling size A Russet potatoes in 10# bags for mostly $9.00 per 50# bale, down from $9.00-$9.50 per cwt a week ago. They are selling 40-70 count Russet count cartons for $13.00-$14.00 per 50# box, unchanged for the week. The weighted average shipping point price for Idaho Russet Norkotahs is $13.19 per cwt, up from $13.10 per cwt last week.
In the Red River Valley size-A Yellow potatoes are selling for $26.00-$29.00 per cwt in 2000# totes, up from $26.00 a week ago. Supplies are light. Florida new-crop size A Yellow potatoes are selling for mostly $20.70-$23.25 per 50# carton, unchanged for the week.
Maine packers are selling 2 inch minimum Round White 10/5# film bags for $11.00-$11.50 per 50# bale, unchanged from a week ago. Florida packers are selling 50# cartons of size A Round White new-crop potatoes for $22.70-$23.25 per box, unchanged from last week.