The chip potato market is quiet. Plants are running almost exclusively on contract supplies. Quality seems to be holding up well. Recovery rates from the 2021 potato crop are high. That is reducing the volume of potatoes needed. Chip potatoes from the eastern states are being shipped to the Columbia Basin, for frozen processing, where raw product supplies are extremely limited.
The US exported 9.78 million lbs of potato chips (mostly product fabricated from potato flakes) during December. That exceeded year-earlier sales by 752,000 lbs, an 8.3% increase. Sales to Mexico, the largest US potato chip customer fell 15.6% short of December 2020 exports. Canada and Saudi Arabia increased their imports by 37.6% and 26.1%, respectively. Exports to the United Arab Emirates and the Philippines were nearly flat. Qatar more than tripled its imports of US potato chips during December. Sales to Japan dropped 12.5% below the 2020 pace.
US packers shipped 1.628 million cwt of table potatoes during the week ending February 12, 2022. That is down from 1.755 million cwt a year earlier. Michigan packers shipped 68,300 cwt of potatoes during the week ending February 12, 2022. That is up from 59,400 cwt during the same week in 2021. Last week’s Michigan shipments were 84.8% Russets, 10.8% Yellow potatoes, and 4.4% Round White potatoes.
USDA reports that Michigan packers are selling size A Russets in 10# bags for mostly $11.00-$12.00 per 50# bale, unchanged from a week ago. Wisconsin packers are selling size A Russet potatoes in 10# bags for mostly $9.50-$10.00 per 50# bale, unchanged from last week. They are selling Russet 40-70 count cartons for mostly $16.00-$17.50 per 50# box, unchanged from a week ago. The weighted average shipping point price for Idaho Russet Norkotahs is $22.52 per cwt, down from $22.71 per cwt last week.
Red River Valley packers are selling size A Yellow potatoes in 2000# tote bags for mostly $24.00-$26.00 per cwt, unchanged from last week.
Maine packers are selling 2 inch minimum Round White potatoes in 10/5# film bags for $10.50-$11.00 per 50# bale, unchanged from a week ago.