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U.S. Fall Potato Production 2017 Down Two Per Cent

USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) estimates the United States fall potato potato production for 2017 at 399 million cwt, down two per cent from last year. The area harvested, at 900,600 acres, is down one per cent from the previous year. The average yield forecast, at 443 cwt per acre, is down 4 cwt (-0.9 per cent) from last year’s record high yield. In Idaho, growers reported some flooding and cool…

U.S. Red River Valley potato quality, harvest good

Minnesota and North Dakota Red River Valley potato producers shipped more than 700,000 hundredweight of potatoes in September and October, a 32 per cent increase over last year’s count, according to the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association (NPPGA). That’s slightly ahead of shipments at that time for the 2015 crop, making this year the largest fresh crop harvest in many years, according to the association. Producers faced a trucking shortage because truckers…

NEPG adjusts potato harvest estimation upwards

Although the full harvest is not in the stores yet, the North-Western European Potato Growers (NEPG) estimates the actual harvest at 28.9 million tons for the five countries. This is more than the estimate of last September. The five countries that comprise the NEPG include Great Britain, France, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. The NEPG stresses that especially in Great Britain and the Netherlands, there is still at least 10-15 per cent…

Irish potato farmers fear ‘one of the worst harvests in memory’ after wet spell

Potato farmers in Northern Ireland are facing their worst harvest in living memory as more than half of this year’s crop is still in the ground. One Co Down farmer could lose more than £130,000 as he battles the challenging wet conditions that have potentially destroyed much of his crop. Northern Ireland’s potato industry said they are hoping for a break in the wet weather to save it from one of the…

Wet weather causes NZ potato shortage

Stocks of potato chips are stretched thin as New Zealand battles a nationwide potato shortage after a wet winter. A spokesperson with the country’s largest food distributor, Foodstuffs, said some of the potato chip suppliers were “having challenges meeting demand” due to the wet weather conditions. It is not yet believed that the shortage will impact on the availability of fresh potato stocks. According to Pukekohe Vegetable Growers Association (PVGA) president Brent…

Beeton, Ont. potato farmers reaching ‘critical point’ in harvest season

It’s potato harvest season, and as storage bins throughout the Beeton, Ont. area begin to fill up with mounds of taters, some farmers are finding themselves in a bit of a high-wire act to ensure they don’t lose their crops. Mark Vanoostrum, the supply and quality manager for W.D. Potato in Beeton, said the chipping potatoes harvested so far are revealing the effects of all the wacky weather the area experienced this…

Canadian Potato Crop Report

The United Potato Growers of Canada released their latest potato crop report on Oct. 2, 2017. Prince Edward Island Harvest into storage is beginning this week. Some growers have not yet started. Overall harvest estimate is 15-20 per cent complete. So far, harvest conditions are excellent, so if all goes well and weather permitting, most of the crop will be harvested by the end of October. A couple of harvest days were…

Disease Watch: Late Blight

Late blight disease caused by Phytophthora infestans devastates potato foliage and tubers. The pathogen can survive between growing seasons as mycelium in potato tubers and plant tissues, and on alternative hosts of Solanaceae family. The pathogen may also overwinter as oospores in soil. Infected tubers used for seed or discarded onto cull piles or infected volunteer potatoes are sources of infection for the new growing season. In addition to potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant,…

P.E.I.’s dry summer may take a toll on potato yield

P.E.I.’s dry summer may affect the potato yield in parts of the province as the autumn harvest begins. Though the summer has been gorgeous for tourists, Greg Donald, general manager of the P.E.I. Potato Board, says the lack of rain will take a toll on potato yields in parts of the province — particularly West Prince. “[We] definitely have concerns in some areas of the Island and have no doubt that it’s…

Study warns of blackspot bruising potential

The accumulative impact of hot days, combined with warm evenings that fail to cool down, could result in blackspot bruising early in the harvest season, according to a recent study by the Idaho Potato Commission. The Commission sponsored the study to warn Idaho growers of preventative measures to avoid blackspot bruising of potatoes during the early harvest period. The study, published by University of Idaho potato researchers Mike Thornton and Nora Olsen,…

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