Business & Policy
Alberta sees largest potato acreage increase in 2023
July 26, 2023 By Potatoes in Canada
Statistics Canada released its first estimate of potato acreage in Canada, which is estimated at 396,922 acres, a 2.5 per cent increase or 9,819 acres more than last year.
In 2022 acreage had been very flat over 2021, an increase of only 2,818 acres in contrast to a big jump in 2021 post-COVID. The majority of increases we have seen in the last two to three years have been predominantly in the major processing provinces, bringing supply back to meet demand increases in the industry that began pre-COVID. However, due to significant rises in input costs starting in early 2021, coupled with increased interest rates and land costs, as well as seed shortages, most areas in Canada saw acreage remain fairly flat compared to last year.
The largest acreage increase in 2023 was reported in Alberta, planting an additional 6,920 acres representing a 9.5 per cent increase over last year. Most of this increase is in the processing sector responding to continued increases in global demand for frozen fries as well as the announcement earlier this year regarding the planned expansion of the McCain Coaldale facility.
P.E.I. saw an acreage increase of one per cent.
All other provinces showed increases in planted acreage for this crop year at varying levels, with the exception of Quebec, which posted a 731-acre decrease compared to 2022 (based on the revised acreage figure of February 2023). Most regions reported differences in acreage figures depending on the sector, with some, like Quebec, down in chip but up in frozen and flat on-table and seed, or Manitoba slightly up in fresh but flat in processing.
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