Unusual weather events during the spring and summer in North Carolina will delay the harvest of the 2013 sweet potato crop. Speculation among growers in the state is that there could be a significant decrease in volume of harvested sweet potatoes as compared to last year’s abundant yields and inventory.
A cooler and wetter-than-normal May delayed the transplanting of the sweet potatoes, resulting in a
10 percent decrease in acreage from 2012 to 2013. The weather patterns that brought excessive moisture to the Eastern portion of the U.S. in June have impacted North Carolina’s entire agricultural community.
North Carolina sweet potatoes are grown in sandy soils so the fields drain rapidly; and with the prospect of warm, dry days ahead, the crop can recover. Growers are now implementing plans to address a later harvest window in October instead of the normal months of August and September.