About 10 days ago, the National Potato Council got a phone call from the USDA and Mexico negotiators. “On the call, we were informed they wanted to move forward with chipping potatoes first and then, table stock potatoes wouldn’t advance until later in the year,” said Matt Lantz, vice president of global access, Bryant Christie Incorporated. And then, Mexico said they would only include two chipping potato imports from the United States. For most of last year, Lantz and other potato industry professionals worked with Mexico on the logistics of getting fresh potatoes (including chipping potatoes) into the country. At the Potato Expo, Lantz was optimistic this market would be open by February. It’s now March. Attending the Washington Summit this week, Karlstad, Minnesota seed potato grower Justin Dagen is concerned about what this news means for his fresh potato customers. “They need to have the right to go into Mexico. That’s why I’m here.”
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