The United Potato Growers of Canada released an analysis of the U.S. 2018 potato production estimates on November 14. Kevin MacIsaac, general manager, UPGC, provided the following commentary.
NASS estimates 2018 production will be up 3.7 million hundred weight. Processing acreage increased this year to meet the needs of the Burley plant expansion. Fresh acreage is less this year. Yields are estimated to be 5 cwt./acre higher moving from 435 cwt./acre last year to 440 cwt./acre this season.
Production is estimated to be up 7.2 million hundred weight. Planted acreage was about the same however some fresh acreage has shifted to processing. Yields have returned from 600 cwt./acre last year to 645 cwt./acre in 2018.
Planted acreage in Oregon increased by about 7,000 acres to meet processing expansion in the Columbia Basin. Production is expected to increase by 7.2 million hundredweight. An increase in yields to 620 cwt./acre from 2017’s 550 cwt./acre is also a big contributor to overall volume.
The 2018 growing season was a difficult one with excessive rainfall, reducing yields from 425 cwt./acre last year down to 400 cwt./acre. In addition, extreme harvest conditions have reduced the overall production by 1.7 million hundred weight.
North Dakota and Minnesota
These states are the other two with expected declines in production for the 2018 crop. Minnesota’s yield moved up from 405 cwt./acre to 420 cwt./acre, reflecting a better crop but with reduced acreage. North Dakota’s yield was estimated to be 5 cwt./acre lower for the 2018 crop.
Source: United Potato Growers of Canada November 14, 2018 news release