News September 2018

Heat, smoke not expected to diminish Oregon potato harvest

Image result for Heat, smoke not expected to diminish Oregon potato harvestMonths of intense heat and smoky skies are not expected to diminish Oregon’s potato crop, with farmers across the state predicting average to above-average yields heading into the bulk of harvest. Bill Brewer, CEO of the Oregon Potato Commission, said the overall impact of wildfire smoke is yet to be determined in spuds, but he has not heard of any major setbacks or problems with quality. Hot weather can be hard on certain potato varieties, such as Russet Burbank; the gold standard for french fries; though in general, Brewer said he anticipates a roughly average harvest statewide and good quality potatoes. Potatoes ranked as the seventh-most valuable agricultural commodity in the state in 2017, raking in $176.9 million. Dan Chin, who runs Chin Family Farms Organic outside Merrill in the Klamath Basin, said they were socked in by smoke from wildfires raging in southern Oregon and northern California for a solid month and a half. Read more