Canada: Optimistic outlook for potato crop in 2017

Strong pricing, stable contract volumes and a low dollar help provide an optimistic outlook for the Canadian potato crop this season. Potato growers in Canada enjoyed a banner year in 2016. Prices for fresh potatoes were strong from coast to coast. And for the third year in a row, the national average for potato yield hit record levels, coming in at 307 hundredweight (cwt) per acre. Kevin MacIsaac, general manager of the United Potato Growers of Canada (UPGC), said growers enjoyed above average yields in most parts of the country. Despite a late start this year, MacIsaac said most growers remain optimistic about this season. The number of acres planted this season is expected to be relatively close to last year’s overall total of 346,827 acres and may even increase slightly in some provinces. Another bit of good news is that holdings from last season have declined significantly as the 2016 crop has moved through the pipeline. Challenges are foreseen regarding exports to the US though. More