Winter weather has ended this year’s potato harvest in the Canadian province of Manitoba. Vikram Bisht with Manitoba Agriculture says about 25 per cent of the crop is remaining in the field or has been damaged, according to a report published by Pembina Valley Online.
“Final numbers have not come out but it could be anywhere from 12,000 to 15,000 acres of potatoes in total which may not have been harvested or would have had serious frost injury,” he commented. Bisht notes potatoes in the ground will most likely remain there until spring.
“Once the potatoes freeze, then I think they have no purpose other than composting,” he said. “What has been left out there is of no use, it is going to be basically a disturbance in the coming spring operation and some of these fields will have to be worked on very quickly and then replanted into some other crop.”
Bisht suggests processors may have a tough time finding potatoes as other regions are in the same predicament. He adds Alberta may be able to provide some potatoes but supplies are tight in other regions.
On a positive note, there has been no late blight discovered this year and the early potato crop did provide excellent yield and quality.
Source: Pembina Valley Online