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Canadian potato crop udate September 6 2021

Eastern Canada record rainfall affects potato crop

Weather patterns have continued to influence the outlook for the Canadian potato crop since UPGC’s last update. Eastern Canada (particularly PEI) has received record amounts of rainfall from the remnants of Hurricane Ida. The province of Manitoba has also received some rainfall over the past two weeks. High temperatures have broken in Alberta, but it still remains dry.

The heat has also come down this week in Quebec as well. Thoughts on growers’ minds, include hopes that any potential early frosts hold off and allow the crop to finish up. Most areas will not see harvest reach full capacity until the third week of September. Here is how the crop looks at this time:

Prince Edward Island
September 2nd brought the remnants of Hurricane Ida to Prince Edward Island bringing record setting daily accumulations of rain with it. Potato fields received anywhere from 80mm to 150mm during a 24hr. period. Just one day previous, the crop was beginning to look dry in some areas that had not received significant amounts of rainfall during the month of August. This rainfall event has greatly improved the outlook for long season varieties such as Russet Burbanks.

New Brunswick
Although the potato belt, was not the recipient of large amounts of water from the recent hurricane, it did receive an inch previous and 1.5 inches the previous week before that. This should carry much of the crop into maturity as vines are beginning to lay down and lighten in colour. Early harvest on chipstock has been very promising with reported yields well above average.

The excessive summer heat broke on Monday after the province received an inch of rain on Sunday. Some areas received only in the range of 7-8mm. The russet crop has been stressed with plants  falling down in the heat, so the reprieve may be too late for those fields. The early harvest was very good with high yields and good quality. Overall yields will be higher than a year ago, although growers are looking at a smaller size profile.

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