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LIVE FROM THE FIELDS: SEEDER IN SALINAS VALLEY LETTUCE CROPS

July 18, 2022

  • Unseasonably warm and humid weather in June and early July has caused many lettuce crops to develop seeder/long core
  • Markon inspectors have mostly been able to avoid seeder concerns for Markon First Crop commodity packs
  • Value-added processors have had a hard time eliminating core from incoming raw product and finished packs
  • Chopped or shredded romaine and iceberg-based salads in particular have been difficult to keep completely free of core material
  • Temperatures are above normal again this week, which could prolong seeder and other heat-related issues into late July

 

 


MARKET UPDATE FOR AUGUST 8, 2022

MARKETS TO WATCH: AT A GLANCE

 

Peeled Garlic: Supplies of new crop garlic from China have improved. California market continues to be tight even as harvest has begun.

Washington Apples: As Washington is nearing the end of the current crop on several varieties, Royal Galas and Gold Delicious are done. Fuji’s and Pink Ladies are in short supply. The new Royal Gala Washington crop will start in 10 days to 2 weeks.

Asparagus: Demand is good with light supplies on both coasts. Expect supplies to be limited for the next 4-5 weeks.

Avocados: The market continues to ease. Flora crop is in full production with supplies peaking. Overall, good quality and the market is steady.

Red Peppers: Markets are holding strong as supply remains limited this week due to excessive heat and limited production hours due harvest crews being restricted to half day production.

Blackberries: The heat from several weeks back has caused some loss of production. Expect limited availability until mid-August.

Raspberries: Due to the heat that occurred several weeks ago we are seeing short supplies. Numbers in Mexico should begin to pick up in mid to late August.

Strawberries: With Salinas and Watsonville on a steady decline in harvest, availability is very short. We expect this to continue over the next several weeks.

Limes: Prices have increased. Quality is adequate; shippers continue to grade for quality.

Brussels Sprouts: Supplies continue to improve. Expect better quality and market to be steady to slightly lower going into the weekend.

California Valencia Oranges: Supplies of all sizes are extremely tight and will be throughout the season. Expect good quality and pricing to be steady.

California Iceberg: The market is steady. Warm temperatures in the growing regions have brought on lettuce ahead of schedule and suppliers are reaching into fields early. Case weights are ranging from 34-42 lbs. There will be ample supplies for the week.

Mushrooms: Supplies chain issues continue to cause a shortage of supply that will continue through the summer.

Cantaloupe: The Westside deal is picking up volume day by day with good quality as local/regional production continues to ramp up.

Honeydew: Honeydews remain fairly short, but steady. No growers have high production days which has allowed markets to remain at record levels for this time of the year.

Stone Fruit: California continues with peaches, nectarines and red and black plums. California apricots are finished. Cherries are now just starting from British Columbia, while Washington continues. Ontario continues with peaches, nectarines, yellow plums and now blue plums.

Watermelon: Supplies are starting to improve as watermelons are available from many local growing regions.

Onions: While New Mexico and California are in the last few weeks of their season, prices are easing.

Pears: Washington pear supplies are starting to thin out. Prices are generally higher. With California Bartletts having a very nice quality this year, the California market will stay firm for the season as cannery demand is at a historic high this year.

Pineapples: Due to the NDF cycle, there is light volume of pineapples. Expect a return to normal supplies in September.

Tomatoes: Weather-related issues have affected supply along the east coast, but overall supply remains steady. Mexican supplies are also steady. Due to drought and water allocations, California tomatoes have moved farther north and supply will improve, but overall acreage is down this year.

ITEMS ON FIRE / VERY HOT

Idaho Potatoes: The potato supply pipeline continues to diminish as the few remaining Idaho shippers deplete their final storage stocks. The next several weeks will be the most challenging potato supply weeks witnessed. Historic pricing levels for the potato market will continue to be met daily. I am hearing we can expect carton bakers (100ct – 40ct) to be close to $70 starting next week.

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