Market Report October 4, 2023

News Category: Market Reports
potato truck

Temperatures have been hot in Michigan the past few days. That has slowed the potato harvest somewhat. Cooler temperatures and rain are expected later tonight through the weekend. Approximately 75% of the state’s potatoes have been harvested. Reports indicate that quality has been good, and yields are above average. The chip potato business remains quiet.

The USDA has revised 2022 potato production data for 11 of the 13 reporting states, including Michigan. Production exceeded the January estimate in eight of those states, while it declined in the other three states. USDA increased its estimate of last year’s harvested area by 15,800 acres, to 911,400 acres. The U.S. 2022 potato crop is now estimated at 398.74 million cwt. That exceeds the previous estimate by 6.50 million cwt. However, it falls 11.08 million cwt, or 2.7%, short of the 2021 crop.

For Michigan, USDA reports that growers harvested 45,500 acres of potatoes in 2022. That is 1,000 acres more than the January estimate. The state’s 2022 yield estimate was revised upward by 45 cwt per acre, to 415 cwt per acre. That is the third-largest yield on record. The changes boosted the state’s 2022 crop estimate by 2.42 million cwt, or 14.7%, to 18.88 million cwt. However, Michigan’s 2022 potato crop fell 467,000 cwt, or 2.4%, short of 2021 production. That decline in production is puzzling. The state’s combined shipments of table and chip potatoes from the 2022 crop exceeded year-earlier movement by 12.9%. 

U.S. packers shipped 1.484 million cwt of table potatoes during the week ending Sept. 30. That is up from 1.425 million cwt shipped a year earlier. Michigan packers shipped 23,200 cwt of potatoes during the week ending Sept. 30. That is up from 15,265 cwt during the same week in 2022. Last week’s Michigan shipments were 100% russets.

Wisconsin packers are selling size A russet potatoes in 10-pound bags for mostly $12-$13 per 50-pound bale, unchanged from last week. They are selling Russet 40-70 count cartons for mostly $15-$16 per 50-pound box, unchanged from a week ago. The weighted average shipping point price for Idaho Russet Norkotahs is $18.33 per cwt, down from $19.04 per cwt last week.

Wisconsin packers are selling 10/5-pound bales of size A yellow potatoes for mostly $16-$17 per bale, unchanged from a week ago. They are selling 50-pound cartons of size A yellow potatoes for mostly $16-$17 per 50-pound box, also unchanged.

– Report by North American Potato Market News