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May Potato Stocks Up 2 Percent from 2004

The 15 major potato states held 87 million cwt. of potatoes in storage May 1 – up 2 percent from last year and 5 percent above May 1, 2003, according to USDA. Potatoes in storage account for 22 percent of the 2004 fall storage states' production – 1 percent above last year.

Disappearance of 316 million cwt. from the start of harvest to May 1 is down 1 percent from last year and 2 percent below two years ago. Shrink and loss, at 29 million cwt., is up 5 percent from last year and 12 percent above the same date in 2003.

Processors have used 154 million cwt. of 2004 crop potatoes so far this season, down 1 percent from a year ago and 4 percent below two years ago. April usage, at 17.8 million cwt., is 7 percent above last year and up 8 percent from two years ago. Idaho and Malheur County, Ore., total processing increased 3 percent from a year ago, while Washington and the rest of Oregon total processing decreased less than 1 percent from last season. Dehydrating usage accounts for 31.4 million cwt. of the total processing, down 9 percent from last year and 13 percent below the same date in 2003.

Western states held 62.9 million cwt. of potatoes in storage on May 1, up 6 percent from last year but less than 1 percent below two years ago. Idaho's potato stocks are up 17 percent from last year, Colorado's potato sheds stored 7 percent more, and Washington's stocks increased 3 percent from last year. Montana's potato stocks were down 60 percent, Oregon's sheds held 38 percent less than last year, and California's stocks decreased 29 percent from a year ago.

Central states accounted for 18.6 million cwt. of potato stocks on May 1, down 12 percent from last year but 19 percent above two years ago. Michigan's potato stocks are down 27 percent, North Dakota's potato sheds stored 13 percent less than last year, and Minnesota's and Wisconsin's stocks both decreased 7 percent. Nebraska and Ohio's combined potato stocks decreased 24 percent
from last year.

Eastern states stored 5.49 million cwt. of potatoes on May 1, up 28 percent from last year and 29 percent above two years ago. Maine's potato sheds held 24 percent more than last year. Pennsylvania and New York's combined stocks increased 95 percent from a year ago.

Originally posted Monday, May. 23, 2005

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