Nov 19, 2019U.S. potato exports up across the board during first quarter
U.S. fresh, frozen and dehy potato exports saw significant growth during the first quarter of the July 2019-to-June 2020 marketing year, reports Potatoes USA. This continues the growth seen at the end of last marketing year and is in lieu of the continuing trade issues in Asia.
Exports of frozen potato products increased 9% in volume and 10% in value to $305,045,624.
- The volume growth was driven by a 58% increase to the Middle East, 42% increase to the Philippines and 19% increase to Central America.
- The elimination of the retaliatory tariff on fries entering Mexico resulted in a 7% increase, less of a rebound than anticipated.
- Exports to Japan were up 2% as product from the EU, New Zealand and Canada now enjoy tariff concessions into this market.
- U.S. exports to China declined -4% as the U.S. product incurs a 15% retaliatory tariff into that market.
Dehydrated potato exports grew 18% in volume and 22% in value to $59,301,492.
- This growth was driven by 23% increase to Japan, 13% increase to Canada and 11% to Mexico.
- Smaller markets in Asia — Korea, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam — all saw double-digit growth as well.
- The retaliatory tariffs on U.S. dehy entering China led to 31% decline.
Exports of fresh potatoes (table-stock, chip-stock and frozen-stock) increased 17% in volume and 13% in value to $77,689,365.
- The biggest driver was a 34% increase in exports to the largest fresh market, Canada. Much of this is raw product destined for the frozen processing plants there.
- Exports to the second-largest market, Mexico, declined by 13%, as high U.S. prices discouraged imports into this price sensitive market.
- Exports of chip-stock potatoes grew 14% to Japan, 60% to Malaysia, 83% to Thailand and 88% to Vietnam.
- Exports to Korea dropped by 90%, as a large domestic crop led to reductions in both table-stock and chip-stock needs.
These figures are a reflection of potato and product stocks coming out of last marketing year. Continued growth will depend on the availability of potatoes and products in the U.S. based on the lower than average fall harvest and the size of the rebound in EU production.