Weekly Potato Report
Michigan Potato Industry Commission
October 22, 2014
Michigan’s chip potato harvest should wrap up sometime next week. Heavy rains for earlier this week failed to materialize, and forecasts are calling for several days of open weather. That should allow growers to get crops under cover, and for deliveries on field potato contracts to continue through the end of the month. While the long delivery period will allow many chip companies to take all of their field delivery potatoes, it slows early movement on storage potatoes. There will be plenty of chip potatoes in storage, if they hold up and meet chip potato quality standards. Nevertheless, growers may face challenges in the coming weeks. There is concern that chip companies may not need enough potatoes to keep up with storage issues, during the early part of the storage season.
Demand for potato chips is decent, though growers would like to see more orders for their potatoes. The chip companies are running primarily on contract potatoes. There are very few open sales (not enough to establish a market). The chip deal is extremely quiet, as growers focus on wrapping up harvest and late-season field work.
US fresh potato shipments for the week ending October 18, 2014 totaled 1.803 million cwt. That is up from 1.774 million cwt shipped cwt during the same period in 2013. Michigan shipments for the week ending October 18totaled 41,300 cwt, up from 9,700 cwt during the same week last year. The Michigan shipments were 85.5% Russets and 13.6% Round White varieties.
Wisconsin packers are selling baled 10# bags of size A Russets for mostly $6.00 per bale, unchanged from last week at this time. They are selling 40-80 count cartons for mostly $8.00-9.00 per 50# box, also unchanged for the week. The weighted average shipping point price Idaho Norkotahs is $11.04 per cwt, unchanged from last week at this time.
Long Island shippers are selling 50# sacks of size A Round White potatoes for mostly $6.50-$7.00 per bag, unchanged from this time last week. Long Island Chefs are selling for $7.50-$8.00 per 50# bag, also unchanged for the week.
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