Washington Potato Commission
U.S. potato exports in July fell in all categories from July 2017, dragged down by trade wars, Potatoes USA reported Sept. 13.
Frozen-potato exports dropped by 3 percent in volume and 2 percent in value for July 2018 compared to July 2017, the trade group said in a release. U.S. exports of dehydrated potatoes fell by 3 percent each in volume and value. Fresh-potato exports fell by 31 percent in volume and by 22 percent in value.
Mexico in late June imposed a 20 percent tariff on frozen potatoes. Potatoes USA said that caused U.S. exports of frozen potatoes to that country to decline by 17 percent in July 2018 from July 2017, to 9,121 metric tons. Meanwhile, Canadian exports of frozen potatoes to Mexico rose 16 percent to 4,223 metric tons.
Washington State Potato Commission Executive Director Chris Voigt said Washington’s volume to Mexico in July was down by 16.5 percent from July 2017. The state exports about 70 percent of its total potato production.
Elsewhere, U.S. frozen-potato exports increased by 7 percent to Central America, 8 percent to China — to 7,048 metric tons — and rose by less than 1 percent to Japan, Potatoes USA said. The U.S. saw declines of 10 percent to South Korea, 11 percent to the Philippines and 20 percent to Thailand.
China plans a 10 percent tariff for frozen potatoes and a 25 percent tariff for dehydrated potatoes, both yet to be implemented.
U.S. dehydrated-potato exports in July 2018 fell by 13 percent to Mexico and increased by 3 percent to Canada compared to July 2017, to 1,834 and 4,445 metric tons, respectively, Potatoes USA said. Exports to South Korea and Malaysia increased while exports to China, Japan and the Philippines saw declines. China’s volume was down 26 percent to 327 metric tons.
Fresh-potato exports from the U.S. for July 2018 compared to July 2017 increased by 72 percent to Mexico to 9,486 metric tons, and decreased by 36 percent to Canada to 33,245, the trade group said. Exports to Asia fell — by 67 percent to Japan, 65 percent to Taiwan, 59 percent to Malaysia and 58 percent to the Philippines. China is not a targeted country for U.S. fresh potatoes.