French fry processors in North American exported 32.5 per cent more french fries and other frozen potato products to offshore markets during the third quarter, the Nov. 18 issue of the North American Potato Market News (NAPM) says. At 599.9 million lbs, that is 147.2 million lbs more than processors shipped during the same timeframe in 2020.
Canadian french fry processors exported 11.3 per cent more frozen potato products, with the United States taking 88.2 per cent of product, the report says. Offshore exports rose by 40.2 per cent with Japan more than tripling its purchases. However, sales to Mexico fell by 13.7 per cent.
In the U.S. french fry exports exceeded year-earlier shipments by 32.8 per cent, with exports to Canada up 54.6 per cent. The report notes offshore markets grew by 31.5 per cent with the largest increases happening in sales to Mexico, the Philippines, and Japan.
Canada imported 2.357 million cwt of U.S. fresh potatoes in the July to September quarter, up 30.3 per cent from 2020, NAPM says.
“The large increase in July was due to the 2020-crop shortfall. Imports declined after harvest got underway during August and September.”
NAPM says the opposite will occur this upcoming year though as both Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick produced record-breaking potato crops. Processors in the Pacific Northwest and the Prairie provinces are short of raw product though.
“Potatoes from New Brunswick are already moving west to plants in Manitoba. Fryers are in the process of purchasing open market potatoes in the Atlantic provinces, as well as in Maine, to fill the raw product supply shortfall at plants in the west.”