Weekly Potato Report

Michigan Potato Industry Commission
October 29, 2014

Michigan growers still need a few more days to get their remaining potatoes under cover. Most potatoes should be out of the ground before Friday, but the weather forecast is calling for snow and cold weather on that day. Chip companies have been able clean up field delivery contracts. We have picked up reports of some open sales of field-delivery potatoes for $0.50 less than contract prices.

Chip companies have taken all of October to clean up their field-delivery contracts. That puts them 2-3 weeks behind on taking potatoes out of storage. Most observers believe that there are plenty of storage potatoes to get through the season, though reports from Wisconsin suggest that about 500,000 cwt of that crop has been lost to storage breakdown. Michigan observers are concerned that storage losses, there, also could be significant, though they think it will take another month to determine the extent of the losses. The uncertainty about storability of the 2014 potato crop is making decisions on contract volumes for Florida difficult.

US fresh potato shipments for the week ending October 25, 2014 totaled 1.953 million cwt. That is up from 1.936 million cwt shipped cwt during the same period in 2013. Michigan shipments for the week ending October 25 totaled 53,100 cwt, up from 44,755 cwt during the same week last year. The Michigan shipments were 78.0% Russets and 22.0% Round White varieties.

Michigan shippers are selling Size A Russets for $1.50-$1.95 per 10# bag (first report). 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 $11.81 per cwt, up from $11.04 at this time last week.

Michigan shippers are selling Size A Round White potatoes for $1.50-$1.95 per 10# bag (first report). 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. Maine packers are selling baled 10/5# bags of 2” minimum Round White potatoes for $8.00-$9.50 per bale (first report). Long Island Chefs are selling for $6.50-$7.50 per 50# bag, down from $7.50-$8.00 at this time last week.

This Weekly Potato Report includes current Michigan grower issues, in depth market news, and other time sensitive information. This report contains market sensitive information and your candor in using this information is appreciated.  Your comments and suggestions are vital to improving this report and other services.

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