Cultivation/Production, North America, Smart Farming

Triumph over troubles: How Canadian potato farmers overcame a year of woes

For many potato farmers in Canada, 2022 was a challenging year. There were some major weather difficulties to contend with — cold, wet springs delayed planting for producers in New Brunswick, Quebec, Manitoba and B.C. and in some cases contributed to later harvests as well, writes Mark Halsall in this article published online by Country Guide.

Halsall writes that Victoria Stamper, general manager of United Potato Growers of Canada, says producers felt the financial strain from high fertilizer, fuel, transport and labour costs throughout 2022. “It has been a really tough year for a lot of the growers,” she says.

Kevin Brubacher, general manager of the Ontario Potato Board, agrees. “This past season was the most expensive we’ve ever seen,” he says. “Fertilizer was a big part of that, but for everything across the board, we saw increased costs associated with it.”

Dan Sawatzky, general manager of Manitoba’s Keystone Potato Producers Association, says he doesn’t see much relief in sight. “The ability to buy fertilizer when the prices are lower is gone,” he explains. “I anticipate they will continue to be high throughout this spring, so there’s no window of opportunity this year to buy cheaper inputs.”

Source: Country Guide. Read the full story by Mark Halsall here. The article was originally published in the 2023 edition of the Potato Guide.
Photo: A potato crop being sprayed with a late blight fungicide in Ontario. Credit Eugenia Banks, Ontario Potato Board via Country Guide

Editor & Publisher: Lukie Pieterse

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