TRAVERSE CITY — Potato plantings in Michigan held steady this year.
State potato growers planted 46,000 acres in 2012, up 1,000 acres or 2.2 percent from last year. Potato acreage by type is 86 percent white, 12 percent russet, and 1 percent each for red and yellow potatoes, which is similar to last year's percentages. The state's initial yield and production estimates for this year's potato crop will be released Nov. 9 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Michigan Field Office.
Nationally, the area planted for fall potatoes in 2012 is estimated at 1 million acres, up 5 percent from the 2011 crop. Idaho has its highest acreage level since 2007, and Washington's is the highest since 2000. The crop is ahead of schedule in the eastern U.S. where a warm, dry spring allowed for early planting.
By percentage, U.S. plantings included 73 percent russet, 19 percent white, 6 percent red and 2 percent yellow.