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March 7, 2017

Market News

Avocados: This week’s shipments looks steady around 30 to 35 million pounds. Still far less fruit than the industry needs for demand. Field prices remain high. Industry is expecting only 25 to 30 million per week through the end of this crop ending in June. The size cure has adjusted slightly, with fewer 40s and larger and a few more 60s and 70s coming in to the states.
Blueberries: Blueberry supplies remain consistent this week. Most shippers continue to have Chilean inventory to sell while Domestic and Mexican production is slowly improving. Quality on the Mexican, Californian and Florida fruit is much better than the remaining Chilean inventory. This is creating a split market. Prices on Chilean fruit, depending on shipper and quality, are much cheaper than the limited amounts of Mexican and Domestic fruit available. Both California and Florida will continue to increase harvest over the next 2 weeks and really ramp up come April. As production increases, we will see prices level out.
Raspberries: Raspberry supplies continue to be very limited. Supplies have been greatly affected by the recent weather trends in California and Mexico. Although California has seen warmer temps over the last week, the recovery from the expediential rainfall and cold temperatures just a few weeks ago has been and will continue to be a slow process. Shippers are anticipating better supplies as we move forward, but we do not have a set date as to when supplies will turn on. Mexico has experienced recent rains and wind. Again, affecting the quality and resulting in lower yields. When quality is compromised, it does 2 things. First, it lowers the overall volume of usable fruit, but it also drastically slows down production as the harvesters have to take extra time in the picking and packing of the berry in an effort to avoid any potentially poor quality product getting into the final pack. Overall, if weather continues to cooperate in CA and MX, all indicators point to better supplies week over week as we move into April.
Strawberries: Supplies continue to gradually improve on California strawberries as the industry transitions out west. Florida production continues to decline as their season comes to an end (2-4 weeks) and Mexico’s harvest is quickly depleting. Quality on California fruit is much superior than that of Florida or Mexico. As Oxnard and Santa Maria production numbers increase, we expect to see some flex in market prices; as early as this weekend. The weather forecast for the Southern California growing regions calls for warm dry days for the remainder of the week. This will boost harvest numbers and shippers are anticipating better volume and availability by the weekend. Next week, we may see some light rain in CA, but it is too early to predict the effects (if any) on production. Salinas and Watsonville is expected to ramp up production in the next 2-4 weeks.
Broccoli: The broccoli market is definitely a mixed bag. There are much cheaper prices coming out of Mexico through McAllen. While domestically we continue to struggle with supplies, the market is reflecting this shortage. Although on a good note, quality out of Santa Maria has improved dramatically. Salinas Valley is still experiencing purple cast and extremely small bunch and crown size. All other growing regions have had good quality with a sporadic arrival issue due to the heat. The domestic market is still commanding much higher than normal prices. This will continue to last for the next few weeks.
Cauliflower: As the Yuma season finishes at a rapid pace, the Salinas valley is not ready for the demand. The previous weather in Salinas is preventing normal supplies and a smooth transition north. Extremely limited supplies will continue for the next 2 to 3 weeks. But until that point we will see extremely limited supplies and extremely high markets. Quality has been fair from all growing regions with yellow to cream cast and some bruising showing up upon arrivals.
Tomatoes: Mexico supplies remain steady with fob’s at mandated minimums. Round tomato production will continue forth through April 15th and romas will continue through May. Operations are expected to transition to Baja beginning with roma tomato crops in June and round tomatoes two weeks thereafter. There are heavy volumes being dumped into Mexico’s domestic market place and have the ability to send more to the US at any hint of a stronger market. Supply looks to be good for the foreseeable future and markets remain steady.

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