From planting time through harvest, 2019 presented some difficult challenges for growers for potatoes and many other crops in the state of Idaho and across the country, according to Gabriel Boldt, potato variety operations manager at Potandon Produce LLC in Idaho Falls, ID, the nationâ€™s largest shipper of table stock potatoes.
This year, â€œthe whole United States has been affected by some different weather patterns than we have traditionally seen,â€ he said. In Idaho, late spring frost and early fall frost shortened the growing season, disrupting plantings and curtailing the harvest prematurely.
The result is lower than average yields and a smaller than normal size profile.
Boldt talked to The Produce News Nov. 21, about the 2019 potato crop now in storage â€” what he called â€œthe state of the pileâ€ â€” and how Potandon is responding to the resultant marketing challenges in order to meet customer needs as fully as possible.
Potandon sources potatoes not only from Idaho but from every major growing region around the country, and â€œwhat we are seeing is a reduction in yieldâ€ as well as in size profiles â€œas we put these potatoes away,â€ he said.Â