LAKEWOOD, Colo. — This report provides the results of a special survey of potato growers in the San Luis Valley, which was conducted to evaluate potato varieties planted for the 2019 crop. The survey was conducted by the USDA/NASS Mountain Region Field Office with funding from the Colorado State University, San Luis Valley Research Center. Data was collected from potato growers by return mail or by telephone interviews with enumerators. The survey was not sampled to provide a direct expansion of seeded acreage by variety or a measure of the sampling error. Acreage planted to fall potatoes in the San Luis Valley was estimated at 48,600 acres.
Russet varieties accounted for 75.1 percent of the reported acres of all potatoes planted in the San Luis Valley for the 2019 crop, compared with 80.9 percent in 2017. Yellow Flesh varieties were planted on 12.6 percent of the total acreage, which was up from 6.6 percent in 2017. Red varieties represented 5.4 percent of the total, an increase from 5.1 percent in 2017. The remaining 7.0 percent of the total was made up of White, Fingerlings, and Other varieties.
Russet Norkotah continued its ranking as the most popular variety among producers by being planted on 44.7 percent of the total potato acreage and accounted for 59.4 percent of all russet potatoes. Norkotah Selection 296 is the most popular, accounting for 17.9 percent of the total acres planted. Norkotah Selection 3 claimed 11.9 percent of the acreage; Norkotah Selection 8 accounted for 7.2 percent of the planted acres. Norkotah 278 had 3.8 percent of the planted acres. The Canela Russet ranked first among non Norkotah russet varieties in 2019 by being planted on 10.6 percent of the total acreage and representing 14.1 percent of all russet varieties. The Centennial Russet was the second most popular non Norkotah russet variety, at 8.0 percent of the total acreage and 10.7 percent of all russet potatoes. Mesa Russet planted acreage accounted for 6.1 percent of planted acreage. All Other Russet varieties, which includes Cadina, Classic, Innovator, Nugget, Rio Grande, Teton and others, were planted on 5.7 percent of the total acreage in the San Luis Valley.
Red varieties accounted for 5.4 percent of the planted acreage in 2019. No particular variety or type received enough reports to publish separately.
Yellow varieties accounted for 12.6 percent of the planted acreage in 2019. Yukon Gold was the most planted accounting for 3.1 percent of the total acreage and represented 24.7 percent of all yellow flesh varieties. The Soraya variety was planted on 1.5 percent of the total acreage and represented 11.5 percent of all yellow varieties. Other Yellow Flesh varieties totaled 8.0 percent of all potatoes planted.
Total White, Fingerlings and Other varieties, including research varieties and other specialty type potatoes, comprised the remaining 7.0 percent of the total potato acreage. No particular variety or type received enough reports to publish separately.
— USDA, NASS, Mountain Region Field Office
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