May 9, 2018
US frozen exports down in March

U.S. exports of potatoes and potato products were mixed again in March 2018 with exports of dehydrated potatoes up, while both frozen and fresh exports were down for the month according to report from Potatoes USA using figures compiled by Trade Stats Northwest.

This follows a February report that showed some gains as well as some double-digit losses.

The volume of frozen potato product exports declined by 9 percent compared to March 2017 and are now exactly at the same level as they were in the 2016/17 marketing year after nine months. Exports of dehydrated potatoes increased 19 percent in March and are now up 4 percent for the July-June marketing year. Fresh exports were off 8 percent for the month but remain up 10 percent for the marketing year (MY) to date.

The decline in frozen exports for March was led by a 25 percent decline to Mexico, a 22 percent drop to Korea (which is now down 6 percent for the marketing year), a 15 percent decline to Indonesia and down 12 percent to Taiwan. On the positive side, exports were up 40 percent and 47 percent to the relatively small markets of Thailand and Vietnam and were up 3 percent to China, though this market is still down 24 percent for the MY to date.

Dehy exports were paced by an 85 percent spike to Mexico, though this market remains off 4 percent MY to date. Exports in March were up to 22 percent to Canada, 20 percent to Japan, 78 percent to Malaysia and 92 percent to the Philippines, which is now up 80 percent on the year.

The decline in fresh exports for the month was mainly due to a 29 percent drop to Canada, though exports to the north still remain up 6 percent for the marketing year. Exports to Mexico were up 17 percent in March and are up 13 percent for the year; a short domestic supply situation and very high prices should keep exports to the south growing for the remainder of the marketing year the report said. March also brought good growth in exports of chipping potatoes to both Korea and Japan. Exports to Taiwan of both table-stock and chip-stock are also doing very well; up 73 percent for the month and 15 percent for the year.


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