Crop Loss Extreme Weather GSM 

Early-Season Freeze Impacts North America’s Potato Crops

2019’s weather-related crop losses have proved disastrous for North American agriculture.

While much of chatter has focused on the corn belt with its spring flooding, late planting and early freezes, there have also been “significant weather impacts to other agriculture segments as well, specifically potatoes,” writes Jim Foerster for “Most of the U.S.’s top, potato-producing states struggled with a cold and wet harvest season, and its disastrous timing.”

The USDA has recently forecast (a rather optimistic) 6.1% drop in domestic potato output this year, to the lowest levels since 2010.

This shortage of spuds is forcing many North American chip producers to scramble to arrange alternative shipments, often imported.

In Idaho, the U.S.’s top potato producing state, farmers say rain and cold drastically delaying planting and early growth, but it was the harvest season that bore the brunt of the inclement weather: “In October, the average temperature in Idaho was the coldest on record, getting down the 13 degrees at one point during the month,” said Bryce Anderson, DTN Senior Ag Meteorologist. “Coupled with a few notable winter storm systems, it brought on significant disruption at harvest time.” 

The Idaho Potato Commission has estimated that yields were down by up to 20% due to of growing conditions, while 30% of the potato crop statewide was lost to the frost damage at harvest time. 

While “growers in North Dakota experienced one to two feet of snow in mid-October,” said Anderson.

In Grand Forks, ND, multiple sub-zero temperatures were reported around Halloween, and heavy snow heaped on more misery — North Dakota farmers wound up with some 12% of their potato acreage unable to be harvested.

“Similar calamities with ill-timed cold and wet weather also disrupted the potato harvest in Manitoba and Alberta provinces in Canada,” Anderson added. 

Potato harvests in western provinces north of the border were particularly affected, according to Kevin MacIsaac, general manager for United Potato Growers of Canada — farmers in Manitoba, for example, were forced to leave 18% of their potato crops frozen in the ground.

These losses have led to fears that processing factories supplying spuds to restaurants and grocery stores might have to rely on imports. While potatoes originally designated for other purposes, like chips or the bags you buy at the store, could instead be used to make French fries.

Though prices might go up a little, authorities insist people won’t really notice a difference, and that there is no reason to panic buy… hmm…

The lower-latitudes are refreezing in line with historically low solar activity.

NASA has recently revealed this upcoming solar cycle (25) will be “the weakest of the past 200 years,” and they’ve correlated previous solar shutdowns to prolonged periods of global cooling here.

Don’t be fooled by bogus political agendas — our future is one of ever-descending COLD.

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Grand Solar Minimum + Pole Shift

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2 Thoughts to “Early-Season Freeze Impacts North America’s Potato Crops”

  1. 13thgeneration13

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    1. Cap Allon

      Very much appreciated.

      Thank you.


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