Newsletter 6/12/19

Recent Heatwave throughout California has interrupted already reduced lettuce supplies and will likely affect younger plants for the duration of the month. The past few days crews have been limited to partial harvest due to excessive heat. A return to more moderate temperatures is forecast for the end of the week but the short term damage is done . Expect elevated prices to remain until damage can be assessed. Quality had been improving but expect heat related issues including sun and tip burn as well as pale color and varied weights.

Mix Leaf
Excessive high temperatures forced reduced harvest and subsequent damage has pushed the market steeply higher. Demand for Romaine Hearts has been especially strong. Expect elevated prices to remain while growers assess damage to younger plantings.   Quality had been improving but expect to see increased issues with Tip burn and discoloration. Green leaf and Red leaf prices surged higher as well due to reduced supplies as a result of limited harvest hours.Regional Homegrown production is expected to begin soon which will lessen demand out West and keep a lid on pricing.

Brussels Sprouts
Production from Mexico continues to be limited although domestic production has begun and has added enough supplies to significantly ease pricing. Expect the market to catch at more sustainable prices but shippers are currently entertaining sharp deals to enhance demand.

Yields declined dramatically this weeks as high temps forced shippers to strip some plants and send some fields to the juicers. Some shippers are reporting that they are losing approximately 30% of the daily estimated harvest. At this point, they are not seeing any extensive damage to the green/white fruit or blooms which is a good thing. Most of what is being thrown down is red hanging fruit that has been affected by the heat and will not travel. Shippers are working diligently to produce the best possible pack, but with back to back days of over 100-degree weather, shippers will be quoting heavy bruising at shipping point. These conditions exist in both growing areas. Markets look to be steady and firm moving into the weekend with very little open market fruit available.

The majority of supplies are coming from California, Georgia and North Carolina. The quality has been good out of California. The Georgia product has struggled with some weather issues but still remains fair. The market will continue to remain firm into next week.

Supplies will be out of California. Expect to see berries supplies on Mexican raspberries this week. Quality has been good, however we have just received a heat wave which could affect the fruit negatively. Look for possible defects like soft fruit, bruising and wet and leaky berries for the next few days.

Good supplies in California, Georgia, and North Carolina. Quality has been good in all regions. The California crop did receive some extreme temps over the past few days. market remains soft as the various regions vie for market share. Oregon will begin to increase volume next week.

Prices are at near bottom and shippers are looking for business both in Santa Maria and Salinas, the market could get off the floor by the end of the week if shippers start to see a reduction in yields due to the warm weather in all California growing regions. Due to the high temperatures we have had over the last four days we could start to see some quality defects such as yellowing and soft shoulders. Dome size has been 6-8″.

Product is available in multiple growing areas, including Coastal California, inland California, and Baja. Markets that have been sluggish for the past couple of months are now starting to turn around due to hotter temperatures. Quality is good overall, although some reports have been fair at best due to 100 + degree temperatures.

Strong markets continue this week, although there is better volume industry wide. Oxnard volume is improving and Salinas is slowly starting production this week. Schools are out for the summer and demand should start to ease in the coming week. Expect markets to ease in the coming days. Good quality industry wide, although some isolated incidents of seeder and leafy tops have been reported.

The warmer weather we have experienced the last four days has not had any effect on the broccoli crop. There is good availability especially on crown cuts. Look for this to be the situation going into next week. Quality is good. Crowns have generally been 2-4″ in length with a 4-6″ dome, some light purpling and spread on the dome.

Production has been decreasing as we enter Summer month but supplies continue to be available mostly on Seeded or thorn less varieties with limited supplies of the Heirloom variety.

California…Jumbo Yellow Onions are finished in the Imperial Valley. The central Valley has started in a very light way and the quality is suspect at this point with shippers reluctant to go too far east. Hot temperatures have taken a toll on the quality, and most shippers are only loading refrigerated trucks. The market on Jumbos is in the $12-14 range and $12 on 25# jumbo Reds.

New Mexico has started and is in the $12- $14 range on Jumbos and $13 on 25# Reds…unfortunately there was a very heavy rain in the growing area and the quality will suffer because of the extra moisture…

Whites Market is being quoted at quoted as low as $14.00

Stone Fruit
In general,  we are finally reaching good production on California Stone Fruit. . Packouts are improving.  We are seeing better sugar levels and the color is coming on nicely. It’s time to promote! Look to sell beautiful large size Yellow Peaches, the sweetest Yellow Nectarines of the season, and the large supply of great eating White Flesh Peach and Nectarines over next 2-3 weeks.

The Mexican and Coachella Grape harvest is now in full stride. Expect heavy volumes to be picked and packed over the next 3 weeks. Prices are easing and aggressive promotions will be available.  Quality and condition is good. For those of you looking for something special, consider the many proprietary varieties with jumbo size berries. Call us for the details.

Green Onions
Production continues exclusively from Mexico with ample supplies. Reduced Summer plantings will eventually lead to tighter markets by the end of the month. Overall quality remains varied with heavy insect pressure and mechanical damage.

Navel Oranges- As we march to the end of the California Navel season, expect very tight supplies of 113/138’s and a peak on 56’s. There is a wide range in quality out there with some lots heavy to wind scarring and puff. Look for prices on the Navels to continue to creep up as we finish the season. For the transition, know that California Valencia Oranges are currently being pack with good demand on 113/138’s.

Lemons-  Not much change in the California Lemon market expected for the coming week. Good supplies of 75’s and 95’s with some deals available. Mid range sizes (115/140’s) are hold firmer on good demand.  Small fruit (165’s and smaller) is very tight and markets continue to trend upward. Quality is good with very little standard grade being packed. A few Mexican Lemons are crossing into McAllen, Texas, peaking on 140/165’s

Limes- Supplies of Mexican limes continue to improve especially on the larger sizes.  Prices on the large sizes are easing and will continue to move lower. The opposite is true on the small sizes where the market on 230’s & 250’s has firmed up off the bottom. On quality, there is a wide range of quality coming in from Mexico with many lots having to be re-graded before they are shipped out. Be cautious.

Shipping locally grown as this juncture and will come back to California shipping Mexican asparagus from San Miguel de Allende Mexico.

The impending surge in production came to fruition as all desert areas started and harvested at full tilt. Hot weather brought long waiting fields to maturity. Quality remained excellent. Sizes kept peaking on 9s and Jbo 9s with few 12s and scant 15s. Demand was good but somewhat hampered by expensive transportation as the full array of summer fruit competed for space. Also falling prices starting last weekend kept buyers on edge and shopping but not necessarily buying. Thus the market fell and discount deals were abounding.  By this writing however, it appeared buyers were getting more comfortable with the lower pricing and started to clean up their higher priced inventories, perking up demand a bit. Yet production remained prodigious and with hot weather expected all next week that does not look to be changing. Demand should stay fairly good and toward the end of next week or the beginning of the following week some early July 4th sales could start shipping. We look for a reasonably price market to continue with improving demand as next week unfolds. The last week in June or early July, the desert will wind down and with planting gaps from spring rains along we could the market dramatically improve.

Like cantaloupes, production came into full bloom this week on honeydews. Appearance, condition and brix all were quite good. Mexico also continued its hardy harvest. Sizes peaked on 5s, followed by 6s then Jbo 5s. 8s were primarily from Mexico. Demand was hampered by competition from cheap cantaloupes and Mexican product along with expensive transportation. Thus the market foundered and limped along at steady to lower prices with discounts offered on peak sizes. Next week little should change, except Mexico could abate somewhat, leading to less discounting.


No real change with scattered varieties and sizes. Quality overall was okay. Demand was adequate and prices were steady with some discounting here and there.


Organic Items

OG Broccoli and Cauliflower
Cauliflower   Markets have been pushed higher . Limited production and weather related interruptions in Northern California  continue to impact supplies. We expect better supplies in coming weeks with improved weather

Broccoli    Production on broccoli continues to be light but is expected to improve in coming weeks.

OG Herbs & Bunch Greens
Most Herbs and Bunching Green production remain varied with some quality issues affecting supplies but improved weather should help improve quality. Expect supplies to remain unstable as they grow through quality issues from recent heatwave.

OG Leaf and Iceberg Lettuce
Leaf, Iceberg & Romaine demand continues to be strong  Production is likely to be impacted by the recent heatwave in the Coastal growing areas of California. Expect volatility for the duration of the month.

OG Citrus
 Lemons:   Steady, Light production with sizing profile continuing to lean towards larger fruit. The market continues to be strong especially the smaller,  foodservice sizes.

Oranges  Valencia’s offerings continue strong as with most citrus  larger sizes continue to be prevalent. We expect prices to remain competitive on Larger fruit although smaller sizes will remain limited at elevated pricing.

Limes:  Supplies are improving with sizing profile increasing although quality continues to be fair.

Grapefruit:  Predominantly Large sized fruit continues to be available with limited smaller fruit due to previous rains and now excessive heat.

OG Avocados 
 Mexico: Strong demand with limited supplies are expected to continue through June when the seasonal production surge in late June is expected.

California: Season continues with limited production. Expect supplies to be much lower than previous years .

OG Root Vegetables
Carrot Production has been steady with improving supplies . Demand has been very strong. Continue to plan ahead to get full coverage. Some damage to the tops is expected from recent high temperatures.

Potato production has been slow to start but should start to ramp up on Gold and Red with Russets expected to improve by the end of the month

Onion demand remains strong and production is starting to improve with the new crop in the desert.

OG Grapes
Mexico: Supplies of Green and red grapes continue from Mexico with mostly Smaller sizing profile and reduced pricing.

California: Season is expected to have a bumper crop as it ramps up in coming week.

Leave a Reply