Major League Baseball teams are starting to gather their players together for the upcoming season. One place that many teams come to for Spring training is in the Phoenix, Arizona area. Warm days, and mild nights are the things you notice right away, and desert vegetables are not far away. Yuma is only a few hours away and has the same kind of weather. So, we associate Spring training with the Spring vegetable time. Most items are REALLY starting to come on and, in particular, asparagus. It’s getting to be THAT time of year.
Long range weather for the next 10 days in the desert growing areas show highs getting into the high 70s and low 80s. More importantly, lows are in the high 40s to low 50s, which are out of the FREEZE territory.
Still plenty of trucks, and with fuel costs dropping a bit, rates are more flexible.
LETTUCE–plenty of lettuce, and size and weights are picking up. In fact, we are seeing some big, HARD heads that aren’t necessarily attractive on the shelf. We are after lettuce in the mid 40’s for weight and medium large head size. The market remains fairly flat.
BROCCOLI–good supplies of 14s, 18s, and crowns and the markets remain fairly flat. Quality mostly nice out of the desert, while product in the Salinas and Santa Maria areas are not as good. Purple cast and some water spotting showing up.
CAULIFLOWER–not much change here. Markets steady, as are supplies. We are seeing a few more 9 size and there could be some good deals there this week.
LEAF ITEMS–good supplies of green, red, boston, and romaine, and prices are steady to slightly lower. Quality improving daily, as we are slowly working out of the freeze-effected product from December and January.
CELERY–steady to slightly stronger on all sizes, especially on the smaller size 36s and 48s. Supplies coming out of Oxnard and the desert, making truck loading easy.
ASPARAGUS–as temperatures in the desert climb, so do supplies. Most everyone has shifted to 28/1# containers. Demand for grass hasn’t kicked in yet, so there are deals around that are being done for less than the “quoted” prices. Good item to push for the weekend.
STRAWBERRIES–dry, mild weather in the berry country of Oxnard and Los Angeles for the next 10 days, which should bring on supplies. In fact, Driscoll says they should double their numbers next week of what they are currently doing. Prices are still not close to Florida, but we DO have nice quality and should improve daily as long as it stays dry.