Canada’s potato industry is just starting to realize that it will see a major shift in potato production this year.
Prince Edward Island, the eastern most province, will give way to Manitoba in total potato production.
The main reason the shift is moving to the prairies is the opening of a new Simplot processing plant in Portage la Prairie, MB. An additional 20,000 acres of potatoes will be grown there.
This will not only mean present growers will be given additional contract acres, but additional growers may be needed. This year the government set up a $500,000 investment fund to try to encourage youth to move into farming. The average age of a grower in Canada is now 48.
The funds will be used for financial, educational and apprentice-training programs