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How Do I Determine How Old The Carton Of Potatoes Are That Were Delivered To My Restaurant Today? Some Are Shriveled Up But Others Are Still Wet.


Exactly how old are my potatoes that I ordered from the food service distributor this week? They are supposed to be new crop. How can I find out?


Excellent question. If this is new crop, there is a good chance that the potatoes never got to rest in storage but went right to a fresh shipper, were washed and sorted. The potatoes might have been harvested in heat and started perspiring, just like a human might, as it is still a living organism. If trapped in a bag or box then the moisture can cause the potatoes to be wet or sealed up with no ventilation could actually mold if left that way too long. Quite often at the beginning of the season potato buyers at distributors won’t risk new crop being trapped inside a rail car for a long ride to their destination and will order by truck.

My first suggestion, if they are from Idaho, is to look on the carton lid and you’ll find the Julian Date that the potatoes were packed. For example, if they were packed January 2nd, the date would be 002. If packed August 1st, that would be 213. Here is a link to help out:


Carton pictured, before pertinent information is added. Below, the shipper number is 69, the carton count is 50, the potato variety is Russet Burbank and the Julian date that the contents were packed is on day 320 which was in November.