Eastern Canada's Market Update
August 3, 2018 – Higher–than–average daytime and nighttime temperatures in the Salinas Valley have caused industry–wide heat–related defects in commodity and value–added items. Romaine products have been hardest hit; warmer temperatures are causing internal burn, insect pressure, and seeder. Temperatures are expected to return to seasonal averages over the next several days, which will help improve quality.
MARKET UPDATE FOR May 21st, 2019
MARKETS TO WATCH: AT A GLANCE
Green Peppers: Supplies are very tight.
Cauliflower: Yields are way down due to the wet weather in the Salinas Valley the last few months.
Celery: Supplies remain extremely limited and markets are at historical high prices. Poor weather has slowed the growth of this commodity. Demand exceeds supplies. Triggered pricing is in place on contracts as well as with value added items.
Green Grapes: Supplies are limited, quality is fair and prices are high. Expect high amber color and occasional soft berries.
Stone Fruit: California fruit continues this week. Light volumes of peaches, nectarines apricots and cherries are available. Market prices are getting better, but are still high.
Apples: We are experiencing extremely limited supplies of Granny Smith and Golden Delicious apples. Food service sizes (125ct, 138ct) are getting harder to come by. The market is extremely active. Chilean imported Galas are set to arrive in 1-2 weeks.
ICEBERG- Mother nature doused the Salinas Valley unexpectedly with 2+ inches of rain over the weekend. The effects are still being assessed. Stay tuned for updates. In the short term, for this week, supplies of leaf and iceberg lettuces are abundant with strong numbers expected for the next two weeks before the rain. The quality continues to be up and down on a daily basis. Misshapen heads, puffiness, ribbiness, insect damage as well as mechanical are common issues. Insect pressure remains higher than average in some areas. There have also been some reports of salt and pepper burn from a few isolated areas. The weights on liner lettuce is averaging 40-45 pounds. Oxnard, Santa Maria and Salinas are the primary shipping points for leaf and iceberg lettuces off the west coast.
ROMAINE / LEAF- Demand is minimal and supplies far exceed demand. This will likely continue for the entire week. Romaine, as well as all leaf items, are expected to have good availability for the entire week. Again, the weekend rains have delayed harvest, so there may be late week delays and rain related quality issues seen. Stay tuned. Some common defects being reported to include fringe burn, mechanical, brittle, and some insect damage. This is occurring on romaine as well as all other leaf items. The weights on romaine are averaging 30-34 pounds while green and red leaf has been 19-24 pounds.
SPRING MIX/BABY SPINACH/BABY KALE- The baby tender leaf market continues to stay steady on spring mix, baby kale, baby spinach, and cello spinach. Quality is good with minimal yellowing and bruising of the tender leaves. Look for these items to be steady going into next week.
ROCKET ARUGULA / WATERCRESS– Baby arugula supplies are meeting current demand. We have transitioned from Florida to Tennessee for the summer crop. Quality out of Tennessee is excellent. Bunched watercress quality and availability is good. Red watercress, a winter crop is now done for the season.
BROCCOLI- The broccoli market continues to remain tight with the rain seen during the growth/planting process in Salinas. This wet weather has caused “rain” gaps in Salinas. Look for supplies to continue to be snug going into next week. Quality is good with slight purpling, some mechanical damage, and occasional yellow cast.
IMPORTED ASPARAGUS– Mexican production continues to be down with more transition happening this week. We should see more regions opening up in the next couple of weeks. Volumes from California/Washington have increased with better weather in both regions. New Jersey and Michigan are still behind in production due to colder than normal weather. Peru is starting to increase volumes from both regions, and we should see this trend as long as the weather holds up. Markets should continue to remain stable through the month and through June as domestic production picks up and imports calm down.
CAULIFLOWER– The cauliflower market continues to remain in a demand exceeds supply situation. Yields are extremely down due to the wet weather experienced in the Salinas Valley over the last few months. California supply should start to increase later this week. Overall, the quality is good with minor bruising and yellow cast with weights in the 25 to 28-pound level. Look for the market ease going into next week.
BEANS– The green bean market is easing as production increases. There are good supplies out of both Mexico, Florida and Georgia. Quality is very good. Wax (yellow) beans are once again available in light supply. Snipped: Snipped bean supplies are good with good quality.
CELERY- This market continues to gain strength with some suppliers while others remain firm. We continue to be in a demand exceeds supply situation and this will continue throughout the month of May, at a minimum. The growing regions of Oxnard/Santa Maria will continue to be the main region for growing. Mexico will have light supplies as well. Although juicing has many people believing that this has caused such a shortage in the industry for this commodity, it is a partial reason only. Juicing is a factor, but understand acreage was lost in January-February due to rains and cold weather in the southern California region as well as Mexico. Less acreage was planted as well due to flat markets the previous three years. Overall, the industry is down 25-30% of normal capacity. The supply forecast looks steady for the next few weeks with some relief expected when Santa Maria starts production later this month. Once Salinas starts in early June, we should see markets return to more normal levels. Some defects being reported upon arrival to include leafy tops, mechanical and insect damage. Triggered pricing will continue throughout the month with this commodity.
GREEN ONIONS– Green onions supply continues to be plentiful with the recent nice weather in Mexico and Salinas. The cooler weather in March is causing occasional leaf minor and mechanical damage. The green onion market will continue to stay steady going into next week.
EGGPLANT- East: Eggplant supply is very tight. The supply situation has not changed in the last few weeks. South Florida is about through for the season. Plant City, Florida is over their peak on light acreage and will continue through the end of the month. Quality is better in Plant City and shippers are getting higher pricing on fancy eggplant. Quality in South Florida is only fair and most shippers are finishing the season this week. Georgia will start very light volume late next week but will not have any volume until the first week of June. West: Lighter supplies of eggplant are arriving from the Mexican State of Sinaloa. Eggplant supplies have decreased through the month of May. Eggplant supplies are expected to decrease from Sinaloa. More choice than fancy is being packed. The market on eggplant has increased on both fancy and choice grades. Eggplant from California is expected to be harvested as soon as next week. Quality from Sinaloa on fancy and choice pack is only fair.
ONIONS– Pacific Northwest storage onions are finishing up this week with some low-priced yellow onions and very few reds. White onions have finished. Late seed varieties on the yellow are clean with occasional sprouting and shorter shelf life. As the storage season comes to a close this week, look for new crop harvest to start in August. Texas continues to produce all three colors and has reached its seasonal peak. Supplies will wind down over the next several weeks and finish up by the end of May. The California desert is also producing all three colors and will continue through May. Both new crop fresh run areas will exhibit a thin flaky skin and shorter shelf life than the storage onions in the Northwest. New Mexico production could start as early as the last week of May; California valley is expected to star the first week of June.
CILANTRO- The Cilantro market continues to remain steady in Mexico with the recent warm weather and now production has started in Salinas. The cilantro quality is good with an occasional yellow leaf. Look for the cilantro market to continue to stay steady going into next week.
FIELD CUCUMBERS– East: Cucumber supply is very good in Central Florida and South Georgia. South Florida is winding down for the season and quality is starting to slip as well. Central Florida and South Georgia both have good supply and good quality. Some bigger shippers in South Georgia have not started for the season yet, so volume should increase over the next few weeks. Pricing has been steady. West: Moderate supplies of cucumber are continuing to cross through Nogales, Arizona from Sonora, Mexico. Cucumber volume continues to be low from Sonora due to the pricing of cucumber market. Quality out of the Sonora growing district is good. The cucumber market is currently steady and is expected to remain steady. The quality out of Sonora is good.
BRUSSELS SPROUTS- The brussels sprouts market continues to be in a demand exceeds supply situation. Brussels sprouts remain extremely tight with supply being affected by the recent rains in Salinas and Oxnard during the growing/planting process. The quality has been affected by the rain and cold weather and sizing is tending to run smaller due to this recent colder weather. Look for this market to remain tight going into next week.
ZUCCHINI– Zucchini remains plentiful across the multiple growing regions of Nogales, Florida and Georgia. So far, quality has been good across all the different regions. Mexico will probably continue for another week or two along with Florida. Georgia should have supplies through the months of May and June. Yellow zucchini has started in South Georgia with much better supply. Yields are improving and quality has been good so far. Mexico and Florida have started to wind down a little bit due to warmer temps and excessive winds. Other local regions, both east and west, will start with zucchini toward the second half of the month. Zucchini remains a great promotional item. East Coast: Zucchini supply is very good from central Florida to Georgia and South Carolina is starting light supplies. Markets are weak with shippers struggling to move all the supply they are harvesting. Quality with most shippers is good, a few issues with yellow has developed after recent rains. Weather for the rest of the week appears to be mostly sunny and dry with lower temperatures and humidity which will produce a better-quality product. Expect supplies to continue to be heavy for the rest of the week and through the weekend. West Coast: Light supplies of both green and yellow still continue to cross through Nogales, Arizona from Sonora, Mexico. The crop from Sonora is currently producing fancy and medium size and very few large sizes. More #2 quality is being packed than #1 on both varieties.
BELL PEPPERS- The pepper market has started to react and availability on retail grades is in question. Afternoon thunderstorms and high temperatures are taking a toll on the pepper crop in Florida. For many growers in the southern part of the state, this will be the last week of season. California is into much better volume and great quality but not enough to satisfy the existing demand. Central Florida supply is available as well but, like on the west coast, not enough to satisfy the demand. Some Georgia fields will get started in about 10 days but we are still about 3 weeks away from any type of volume. We expect pepper supplies to remain on the shorter side most of this month.
EAST COAST PEPPERS- Pepper supply is very tight. Florida is winding down for the season and sporadic rains have hurt quality and lowered yields. Georgia is going to start harvesting pepper this week but it will be very light volume. Only a few shippers will start this week, most will not start until the last week of May. Quality in Florida has been varied from location to location, even the best newer product is showing some bruising and discoloration from rain and wind. The quality looks good in Georgia so far this spring, total acreage is down slightly, peak availability should be in the first week of June.
WEST COAST PEPPERS– Serrano: Moderate supplies of Serrano peppers are available to load in Nogales, from Mexico. Supplies are expected to remain steady throughout the week. Supplies currently meet demand. Price on Serrano pepper is currently steady. Jalapenos: Good supplies of Jalapeno are available to load in Nogales, Arizona from Mexico. Growers continue to harvest jalapeno out of the Sinaloa. New crop of jalapeno is being harvested from the Mexican state of Sonora where the quality is good. Mostly medium to large size are available from both growing regions. The market on jalapeno has decreased. Green: Light production of green pepper is arriving in Nogales from Mexico. Mostly choice grade is being harvested from the remaining Mexican crop. The quality from the Sonora district is fair to good. Green pepper demand exceeds supply in Nogales. The pepper supply from Sonora is decreasing rapidly and is expected to end within two weeks. Increasing demand on green pepper from the east coast has driven the market up on the west coast. Green peppers are also being harvested in California from the Coachella Valley. The quality from California is good. Both fancy and choice grades are being packed in California. Red Pepper: Light supplies of red pepper are arriving in Nogales. The market on red pepper continues to hold steady. Steady production is expected through Nogales for the week. Quality on red pepper in Nogales is good. Red pepper supplies from Mexico continue to cross through Nogales, Arizona and McAllen, Texas. Red bell pepper Harvest in California is expected to start the back part of this week.
CORN- There is plenty of volume of corn in Florida. Quality is excellent. There is more availability on bicolor than on yellow or white.
BUNCHED KALE- The kale market remains steady as supplies look steady with the recent nice weather in Santa Maria and now in Salinas. Quality is good with full bunches, and only an occasional yellow leaf being reported.
POTATOES– Canada: Canada’s March 1 potato stocks fell 6.2 million cwt short of 2018 holdings. The biggest reductions were in Manitoba and the Maritime Provinces, but British Columbia is the only province with more potatoes in storage than it held a year ago. Canada’s February potato disappearance exceeded year earlier movement by 542,000 cwt. The increase for Manitoba exceeded the total increase for the country. (Last year’s February disappearance for that province was extremely low). However, the only provinces where disappearance fell short of
last year’s pace were Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia. Some of this year’s increased disappearance may be the result of storage losses. Canada’s March 1 table potato stocks are down 15.6% from last year. That is resulting in extremely high prices. As a result of the limited supplies, we expect US imports of packaged table potatoes from Canada to fall 20% short of purchases from the 2017 crop.
U.S.A: Colored potatoes such as reds & yellow varieties are tightening up with most major growing areas cleaning up storage to include Eastern Canada, Northeast USA, Wisconsin/North Dakota, and Colorado. Pressure bruising is an issue as growers get to the bottom of the bunkers and six months’ worth of weight starts to manifest in black external spotting which leads to decay. Pack-outs in some areas are as high as 30%, particularly in yellow varieties. New crop will first appear in Florida, followed quickly by Texas and Arizona. California will start in mid-May. Prices will be high and very firm to start, but even as they settle down, this upcoming time period (Apr-Jul) has always seen the highest prices in the calendar year. Russet potatoes are still plentiful, particularly in Idaho where smaller sizes for bags and carton-count packs can be had at fair pricing. Easter is the last true large-scale promotional opportunity for potatoes, after which consumer usage and sales slow through the summer. What stands a chance during the summer months are bite-size and fingerling potatoes which, due to the small size, make for excellent grilling or cold salad opportunities. These varieties won’t drive volume, but they make excellent complimentary cross-promotional items for grilled meat promotions or salad ingredient promotions. Baking Potato: Idaho russet potato markets are steady on larger sizes with some slightly lower markets on smaller sizes. Larger size 40 count -70 count are seeing an increase in demand with expectations of a stronger market. Burbanks continue to be the main variety and with the smaller size profile, any increase in demand for the larger sizes will push market upwards. Consumer business remains active which will keep the carton flow moving. Quality on Burbanks is good with a few lots showing some shoulder bruise and occasional hollow heart. The remaining late storage Norkotahs will exhibit some internal/external bruising, light hollow heart, light peepers, and occasional soft rot. Washington, Colorado, and Wisconsin continue to product Norkotahs. Wisconsin quality remains fair.
SEEDLESS WATERMELON- Supplies of seedless watermelons are good. Growers are starting new fields out of Myakka, Florida. They are heavier to 36 count seedless this week, with 60 count in lighter supply. Minis have started and supplies are a little tight, but we expect production to increase next week. We are seeing lots of 36 count, 45 count and some 60 count as well out of Mexico.
GOLD PINEAPPLES– Weather in the northern region of Costa Rica is reported as rainy and mostly cloudy with strong rains expected all through this week, which is normal for this time of year. Volume is improving but not at peak volume yet. All forecasts point to peak volume starting next week. Quality is reported as good with 14+ brix reported at the farms. Natural floration harvest is underway and should last no more than 3 weeks. The USDA’s latest crossing report shows last week at a lower volume of 680 loads versus week prior at 1050 loads inbound from Costa Rica, which could be just a lack of update from the USDA since everything indicates volume should be growing. The USDA is reporting moderate demand and a slightly lower market.
PAPAYA- Weather is starting to warm up in the region of Colima; the forecast shows mid-60s in the morning and 90s in the afternoon. Sizing has been peaking on 8/9 count followed by 12s. The hotter weather has advanced maturity faster than normal but steps have been taken in Mexico to reduce this. No major quality issues to report at the moment. The market has come down from last week. We expect volume to start increasing late-May which is sooner than our previous forecast. We will be in peak production starting in June with June the best time period for any ads or promotions.
MANGO- Mangos are currently being imported from the growing regions of Michoacán, Jalisco and Oaxaca, Mexico. The region of Oaxaca will close for the season this week, Southern Sinaloa should be ready to start packing within the next week. The volume has now reached full production and there is good availability on most sizes. The crop is peaking on 10 count followed by 12 and 9 count. The larger sizes of 7 and 8 count remain limited compared to the smaller sizes. The varieties include Tommy Atkins and Haden for the red mangos and quality is very good with the fruit exhibiting a small amount of blush.
BLUEBERRIES– Georgia and Mexico are beginning to decline in production. This will be causing a supply gap for some shippers over the next two weeks. New crop California blueberries have not ramped up as quickly as anticipated putting further pressure on supplies. Quality is good out of Mexico but Georgia fruit is definitely on its last legs with most shippers pulling out of that area this week due to issues. The market should rise slightly through the week as some but not all shippers experience lighter numbers.
STRAWBERRIES- The rain this past Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday brought a significant amount of rain. This will translate into quality concerns. There were harvest disruptions and rain delays through the weekend. The market will certainly firm up as shippers gear up for the Memorial Day pull this week. Santa Maria fruit has occasional bruising, windburn, seedy, misshapen, and overripe and average counts of 15 to 17, occasionally higher and lower. Oxnard fruit is fairly firm with occasional bruising, misshapen and wind burn and average counts of 19 to 21, occasionally higher and lower. Salinas/Watsonville fruit has occasional bruising, misshapen and crease and average counts of 14 to 16, occasionally higher and lower.
RASPBERRIES / BLACKBERRIES– Raspberries: Raspberries continue to be in good supplies coming out of Mexico as we move into the later part of May. Production is expected to pick up out of the West Coast growing regions the first week of June to help bolster supplies. Pricing remains steady as some shippers are already picking small amounts of the new crop raspberries in California. The quality is still reported to be good. Blackberries: Mexico is still moving right along with adequate production. More production in the west will begin to slowly increase supplies. The market should still remain firm with higher undertones as the Mexican supplies lighten up a bit this week. We are still waiting for the heat to come to California and bring on the local crops. Quality is good out of all areas.
LIMES- The transition from the spring crop to the summer crop has been completed and that means that the size profile of the crop has shifted to small fruit. For the next 3 weeks, 70% of the limes to be harvested in Veracruz will be 230s and 250s with 175 count and larger being extremely limited. This is due to the lack of rain in the growing regions. The market for these small sizes is in decline with the larger sizes staying steady. Quality is excellent with deep green color, minimal external defects, and less juice content.
LEMONS– California: Foodservice sizes, 165’s and smaller remain tight and we continue to expect limited availability moving forward. Market prices continue to climb weekly on both choice and fancy fruit. Lemons supplies continue to peak on the large sizes 75ct/95ct/115ct. The rain and cold weather has brought on the larger fruit and smaller fruit is staying limited on sizing and still green on the trees.
CHERRIES- California cherry production is steady. Larger sizes seem a little more snug this week. Quality is being reported as excellent. Market prices have been slowly decreasing as more volume becomes available.
STONE FRUIT- Offshore: We continue to have light availability of imported black plums as supplies come to an end. California: Production of nectarines, peaches and apricots is quickly increasing. Both tray pack and volume fill packs are available with a good range of size. Quality is being reported as very good. Several early varieties are being harvested. Market prices have started to come down slowly as volume increases. We expect to see heavy volumes with plenty of promotional opportunities as we move further into the season. California plums have yet to get started. California production is expected to start later this month.
AVOCADOS- Industry arrivals for last week totaled 45.4 million pounds. Mexico delivered 36.7 million pounds, California harvested 6.9 million pounds, and Peru provided 1.7 million pounds. Inventory levels remain at 51.2 million pounds overall (48.9 million conventional). Current supply flow may increase as Peruvian volumes are expected to climb over the next 3 weeks. With reduced California volumes and Peruvian production still building, Mexico continues to be the leader of industry supplies. Mexico- The state of Michoacán harvested 47.7 million pounds last week, of which 36.7 million pounds shipped to the United States. Field prices continue to trend up, as Michoacán’s Negra crop harvest transitions to the end of the season with reduced volumes week to week. Fruit quality will continue to decline as both growers and retailers struggle to find the right price. Michoacán’s harvest similar to last week with a peak at the 45-million-pound level, and 74-76% expected to ship to the US. The weather forecast for the state of Michoacán is calling for hotter periods. California- California harvested 6.9 million pounds last week. Projected harvest is 7.5 and 8 million pounds for this week and next, respectively. Estimated crop size adjusted up to 165 million pounds. Peru- Peru arrivals totaled 1.7 million pounds in the US last week. Projected arrivals for this week and next are 5.3 and 6.3 million pounds, signaling the start of major US arrivals. Estimated US volumes for the season are projected at 168 million pounds. Market Outlook – We have seen a recent strengthening in field pricing resulting in a stronger market. Meanwhile retail pricing remains high across the country keeping overall demand stable and light. Peruvian fruit has started entering the market in a small way, with bigger arrivals expected the last week in May, first week in June. With high retail prices and an influx of Peruvian fruit, we could see the market come off slightly but should remain strong through the summer.
GRAPES– Chilean grape inventories have begun to wind down into late May, with the delayed start out of Mexico and Coachella helping clean up much of the excess volume that arrived through April. While many importers will still have Chilean Crimsons available over the next 5-7 days, virtually all of the remaining storage green seedless lots are committed to ship through this week. The industry should finally see the Mexican green seedless grape harvest pick up into the weekend; although, most growers only anticipate pallet volume until the next week. Red seedless grapes, the first Flames will also be harvested into this weekend out of Mexico, but very limited volume is anticipated until next week. Most growers in Coachella will begin harvest next week on both colors, with extremely promotable volume out of both Mexico and Coachella the first week of June. Green: Green grape supplies remain extremely limited this week. Import fruit is no longer available and Mexico’s volume is not enough to fill the demand. This is an industry-wide issue. Small quantities of Mexican fruit are crossing in Nogales with a majority of that volume being sold directly from there. The weather in Mexico has delayed harvest, but we are expecting this weekend to warm up. If that is the case, we should see better availability starting next week. Coachella is scheduled to start later this month. By June, we anticipate steady supplies. Currently, the market prices are very high due to the limited availability, but as soon as production ramps up, we will see a quick decline. Red: Red grape supplies remain steady as we look to transition into new harvest areas. Currently, shippers are still utilizing import fruit, but Mexican harvest is expected to start next week. Coachella will follow soon after. The import fruit being shipped now is decent quality, but we are seeing some reports of soft and wet berries. Market prices are flat. As we look to transition into new fruit, we expect quality to improve. Mexican fruit will be priced higher in the beginning, but volume is expected to ramp up quickly and we will see markets react. Long term, we are anticipating an excellent California season with good availability and promotional opportunities.
CALIFORNIA ORANGES- California Navel Oranges: Late season navels are winding down. Supply is peaking on 72/88. 56 count and larger are available but not very abundant. 113/138 count are in very tight supply at the moment. Fruit is grading more choice as the navel season winds down in California. Decent volumes are being harvested and pricing is steady compared to last week. Quality is fair on navels with some puff and scarring in the choice fruit. California Valencia Oranges: We are starting to see Valencia oranges pop up in California but supply is limited, especially on small and large fruit. Cara Cara Oranges: As with Navel oranges, Cara Cara’s are winding down quickly. We expect supplies to last a couple of weeks at the most.
CLEMENTINES- The Moroccan clementine season is done. Clementine’s are now coming from either Israel or California and packed 15x2lb bags.
GRAPEFRUIT- Supply out of Texas is coming to an end. Florida is also finished. Quality out of California is improving, but has some occasional scarring. Internal and external color is nice with high brix. Product is peaking on 48/56 count. California has better supplies on red grapefruit with increasing volume daily peaking on 36/40 count.
CANTELOUPES- Offshore- The rainy season has started and we are seeing rain in the growing regions of Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Honduras. This will most likely force growers to end the season sooner than planned. The last containers are expected to arrive on the 20th. The fruit is solid with good internal and external quality. Mexico- Has good supply on cantaloupe. Solid internal and external quality on fruit out of the growing region of Hermosillo, Mexico. Cantaloupe will be short-lived and will finish up at the end of the month. Arizona/California- Light offerings out of Brawley, California. Mostly cantaloupes and mixed variety melons as well. Arizona will ramp up this week with light offerings. Due to extreme weather conditions in the winter, growers are getting a late start in the desert.
HONEYDEWS- Offshore- There is a good amount of rain in the forecast in the growing regions of Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Honduras. This rain could force growers to end the season sooner than planned. The last arrivals expected to arrive this week. Quality has been good internally and externally. Mexico- The market is flat on Mexican honeydews. Mexico has been pumping plenty of fruit into the pipeline and caused the offshore market to come down in price. Quality is good internally and externally. Arizona/California- Brawley, California will have some honeydews starting this week. Very light offerings as production is just getting started. Arizona will ramp up sometime this week. Grower are off to a late start in the desert due to extreme weather conditions in the winter. Some growers lost their crops and had to replant. The desert crop and the Westside crop will overlap come July.
PEARS– Washington: Foodservice sizes (120ct and smaller), of Anjou and Bosc, are seeing increased demand, minimal availability, and are in few hands. Half carton Red Anjou pears are the prevalent pack, for most shippers, this time of year (30s through 55s) and are available. Offshore: Chilean and Argentinean Bartlett pears are still available. Also, Chilean Packham (70-100ct) are also available to load with 110/120ct.
California: California Bartlett pears expected to start the week of July 8.
TOMATOES– East Coast: Spring crops in the Palmetto/Ruskin growing region continue to produce good volume. Production has a good mix of all sizes allowing for more balanced pricing. There are still value buys on the smaller sized fruit that is slightly more plentiful. A steady flow of roma tomato imports across the southern US border influences the pricing of Florida roma offerings which remain unchanged this week despite the withdrawal of the suspension agreement. Grape and cherry tomato harvest is also steady and will have some upward pressure towards the end of the month with the central part of the state transitioning north to Quincy. West Coast: Mexico grown tomatoes continue to decline in supply with just enough volume supply to meet the needs of the west coast markets. Duties are set at 17.56% of the value of tomatoes crossing into the US directly affecting the cost of goods. It is too soon to determine how supply will be affected but it is expected that imports will be reduced. Nogales is cleaning up for the season and pushing out product on hand. XL sizes are extremely limited and selling out daily. Mainland Mexico will be wrapping up production in Sinaloa by mid-May creating upward pressure if Baja has a slow start. Currently, Northern Baja has begun harvesting in San Quentin with volume increasing into next week helping the overall market by the end of the month. Roma tomatoes are currently in good supply out of mainland Mexico with more programs beginning in Baja in the next couple of weeks. Grape tomato offerings are steady and expected to contract a bit this week with supply lessening amidst transition in the short term.
APPLES- Imports: Imported Royal Galas, Granny Smith and Fujis from Chile are now available. So far prices are holding firm and most growers believe they will stay strong throughout the season. Washington: Eastern demand has shifted to the Pacific Northwest and shippers continue the difficult task of filling orders that call for smaller fruit (125ct and smaller). Making the situation worse, retail bag packs are commanding a significant percentage of the already minimal inventory on small apples. Royal Gala: The crop is smaller in volume than last year. Prices are generally firm. Strong demand for retail sizes and grades as well as consumer bags. The slicer market is using more small, low-grade fruit than the industry can produce. Granny Smith: The crop is significantly smaller in volume than last year. Most of the availability is on oversized fruit (48s and 56s). Prices are high and shortages exist throughout the manifest, but particularly on the smaller sizes. Retail bags are basically unavailable as all shippers are struggling to cover their retail commitments at this point. Red Delicious: There are deals to be had on red delicious. The crop is smaller in volume than last year but retaliatory tariffs and soft demand from export markets has reduced demand. Prices have been trending lower and are negotiable. The lowest prices of the year are upon us. Fuji: High-color fruit is limited this year; however, there are deals to be had on lower-color Fujis. Retail sizes and grades remain tight. Gold Delicious: The crop is very short and product is very tight. Prices are much higher than last year with small sizes especially scarce. Over the past several years, many gold delicious trees have been pulled out of the ground and replaced with other varieties that are gaining popularity. The short crop this season has exasperated the situation. Honeycrisp: As it seems to happen every year, the market continues to rise as we get later in the season. Look for this trend to continue throughout April. There will be very limited supplies of import Honeycrisp.
New items now in season
CASTLEFRANCO / FLORIDA JUICE ORANGE / CLEMENTINES / CARA CARA ORANGE / ONTARIO RHUBARB / ONTARIO FIDDLEHEADS / ENGLISH PEAS / RAMPS / CHERRIES / APRICOTS / PEACHES / NECTARINES / FAVA BEANS
Wild Foraged Products
SPRUCE TIPS- From BC. Season just started.
RAMPS- From West Virginia. Good supplies.
WHITE ASPARAGUS- From France. +16mm and +22mm available.
WILD ASPARAGUS- From France. Season just started 200gm bunches.
STINGING NETTLES- From Oregon. Going strong.
MINERS LETTUCE- From Oregon. Peak season.
FIDDLEHEADS- From British Columbia. Great quality with good supplies.
SUMMER TRUFFLES- From Spain. Just started.
BLUEFOOT- From France. Fresh weekly arrivals. Limited stock.
MOREL MUSHROOMS- From BC. Perfect quality.
** COMING SOON ** – Fresh Porcini, Mousseron and St. George.
Items no longer available or very short
VALES SOVEREIGN POTATO / RED BELGIUM ENDIVE / PRICKLY PEARS / SEVILLE ORANGES / RED CURRANTS / GALIA MELONS / CALIFORNIA POMEGRANITE / GREEN OLIVES / FORLELLE PEARS / FLAT BEANS / RED & BLACK PLUMS