Jun 14, 2006
June Potato Stocks Down 23 Percent from Last Year

The 13 major potato states held 40 million cwt. of potatoes in storage June 1, down 23 percent from last year and 13 percent below June 1, 2004, for comparable states, according to the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. Ohio and Pennsylvania were dropped from the potato stocks program starting with the 2005 storage season. Potatoes in storage account for 11 percent of the 2005 fall storage states’ production, down 2 percent from last year.

Disappearance of 333 million cwt. from the start of harvest to June 1 is down 4 percent from last year for comparable states. Shrink and loss, at 24.7 million cwt., is down 23 percent from last year for comparable states.

Processors have used 167 million cwt. of 2005 crop potatoes so far this season, down 3 percent from a year ago and 4 percent below two years ago. Idaho and Malheur County, Ore., total processing decreased 2 percent from a year ago, and Washington and the rest of Oregon total processing dropped 3 percent from last season. Dehydrating usage accounts for 33.8 million cwt. of the total processing, down 12 percent from last year and 14 percent below the same date in 2004.

Comparisons by region will not be made in this narrative to avoid disclosure of individual operations. Comparisons for individual states are as follows. Idaho’s potato stocks are down 27 percent from last year, while sheds in Maine held 7 percent less than last year. Colorado’s stocks dropped 39 percent from last season. Stocks in Minnesota decreased 43 percent and North Dakota’s potato stocks dropped 73 percent from last year.

California, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska and New York’s potato stocks combined decreased 8 percent from the same date in 2005. Washington’s potato stocks are up 13 percent from last season, while Oregon’s sheds held 19 percent more than last year and Wisconsin’s stocks increased 6 percent from 2005.

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