Weekly Potato Report
Michigan Potato Industry Commission
May 15, 2013
The storage chipstock shipping season is winding down. Regional chip companies should clean up their remaining Michigan potatoes within 7-10 days. Frito-Lay hopes to continue pulling potatoes from Michigan for the next 3-4 weeks, but that will depend upon the volumes needed. Frito plants continue to run hard, but Florida growers are complaining about slow movement of potatoes to regional chip companies. There still is concern about supplies during the first half of June, but losses from the May 2-4 rains in the Hastings area may not be as serious as originally thought.
Canada reports that it held 11.69 million cwt of potatoes in storage, on May 1. That exceeded year-earlier inventories by 5.89 million cwt, a 26.7% increase. Most of the extra potatoes are earmarked for frozen processing, but Ontario's chip potato stocks also increased. Ontario had 1.38 million cwt of potatoes in storage on May 1. That exceeded year-earlier stocks by 293,000 cwt. The Ontario inventories included 970,000 cwt of chip potato. That exceeded year-earlier holdings by 129,000 cwt. Ontario's May 1 chip potato holdings were at the highest level for that time of the year since 2005. However, those stocks came down by 514,000 cwt during April. At that pace, the remaining chipstock would be cleaned up by June 26.
US fresh potato shipments for the week ending May 11 totaled 1.995 million cwt, compared to 1.922 million cwt a year earlier. Those shipments included 28,600 cwt of potatoes from Michigan. The Michigan shipments were up from 20,600 cwt during the same week in 2012. The Michigan shipments were 74.5% Russets and 25.5% Round White potatoes.
USDA reports that Michigan packers are getting mostly $1.35-$1.40 per 10# bag for size A Russets, unchanged from last week at this time. Wisconsin packers are getting mostly $6.25-$6.50 per bale for 5/10 non-size A Russet potatoes, up from $6.00 a week ago. Wisconsin 50-70 count cartons are selling for mostly $7.50-$8.50 per 50# box, up from $7.00-$7.50 at this time last week. The weighted average shipping point price for Idaho Russet Burbank potatoes climbed to $10.91 per cwt, from $9.60 at this time last week.
Maine baled 10/5# 2" minimum Round White potatoes are selling for mostly $7.25-$7.50 per 50# bale, unchanged from last week at this time. Florida growers are getting mostly $22.75-$24.75 per 50# bag of new-crop Round White potatoes (first report for the Hastings District).
Information comes from Bruce Huffaker, North American Potato Market News. This weekly newsletter has more complete potato market information. For subscription information, call (208) 525-8397, fax (208) 525-8569, write PO Box 135, Shelley ID 83274, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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