Freezers in North America currently have 1.142 billion lbs of frozen product as of Jan. 31, the Feb. 24 issue of the North American Potato Market News (NAPM) says. This is 20 million lbs below year-earlier holdings.
While stocks are lower than last year, the January increase was 40.3 million lbs — nearly double last January’s increase. At the current usage rate there’s a a 31.5 day supply, the report says. This is slightly above last year’s 31.3 day supply.
“An average stocks drawdown from now through the end of June would provide the industry with little to no cushion of finished product to carry it through the 2022 crop transition,” NAPM notes.
P.E.I. Potatoes Update
The report says its estimated growers in Prince Edward Island will destroy approximately 3.0 million cwt of table potatoes through the government’s destruction program — marking 10.5 per cent of the province’s 2021 crop. The program was put in place to deal with excess crop due to the current export restrictions following the potato wart discovery.
“Heavy snowfall has made the destruction process extremely difficult. As a result, P.E.I. authorities have extended the destruction deadline to March 4,” the report says.