Chip potato markets are extremely quiet. Chip plants are running almost exclusively on contract potatoes. Contracting is under way in several areas, though growers are concerned that prices might not cover rising production costs.
Canada is reporting that it had 79.89 million cwt of potatoes in storage on January 1. That is up 15.70 million cwt from the year-earlier inventory, a 24.5%% increase. The increase is concentrated in the Maritime Provinces, where inventories are up 54.3% from 2021 holdings. Ontario had 5.400 million cwt of potatoes left in storage on January 1. This year’s stocks exceeded the 2021 inventory by 928,000 cwt, or 20.8%. Intended use data show a 677,000 cwt increase in chip potato stocks, to 3.859 million cwt, a 21.3% increase. Quebec had 9.548 million cwt of potatoes in storage on January 1. This year’s stocks exceeded the year-earlier holdings by 1.945 million cwt, or 25.6%. Processing stocks (chip and frozen) rose by 811,000 cwt, or 28.3%. Large chip potato inventories in Ontario and Quebec should be adequate to carry the Canadian chip industry through the storage season.
US packers shipped 1.643 million cwt of table potatoes during the week ending January 8, 2022. That is down from 1.703 million cwt a year earlier. Michigan packers shipped 68,500 cwt of potatoes during the week ending January 8, 2022. That is up from 59,600 cwt during the same week in 2021. Last week’s Michigan shipments were 86.9% Russets, 8.5% Yellow potatoes, and 4.6% Round White potatoes.
USDA reports that Michigan packers are selling size A Russets in 10# bags for $11.00-$11.50 per 50# bale, unchanged from a week ago. Wisconsin packers are selling size A Russet potatoes in 10# bags for mostly $8.50-$9.50 per 50# bale, unchanged from last week. They are selling Russet 40-70 count cartons for mostly $16.00-$17.00 per 50# box, also unchanged. The weighted average shipping point price for Idaho Russet Norkotahs is $22.63 per cwt, unchanged from last week.
Wisconsin packers are selling 10/5# bags of size A Yellow potatoes for mostly $18.00-$19.50 per 50# bale, up from $18.00-$18.50 per 50# bale a week ago. They are selling 50# cartons of size A Yellow potatoes for mostly $18.00-$19.00 per 50# box, up from $18.00 per 50# box last week. Red River Valley packers are selling size A Yellow potatoes in 2000# tote bags for $22.00-$26.00 per cwt, up from $22.00 per cwt a week ago. Long Island packers are selling size A Yellow potatoes in 2000# tote bags for mostly $17.00 per cwt, unchanged from last week.