Blustery conditions with winds in the 25-45 mph range will continue across the west this week as high pressure builds. Winds die down over the weekend with gradual warming into next week. Temperatures cool slightly to seasonal norms across Mexico this week with gradual warming next week. Warm and humid conditions look to continue across Florida as a trailing cold front brings a chance of light showers over the weekend. Dry and warm conditions return early next week.
Transportation Update (effective Sunday)
Trucks are backed up at the Mexican border, with border issues, the Easter Holiday, product out of Mexico could be unstable. Could see some mid-week changes depending on when growing area transitions take place.
Avocado (Mexican) There are delays at the border as trucks are just waiting to cross into the US on all commodities. There are trucks at the border with fruit that should have arrived last week. That being said, suppliers are seeing a leaner inventory. Demand continues to be very strong as we are in a demand exceeds supply situation. Limited on all sizes especially 48s #1 and #2 grade fruit. Expect suppliers to offer sub-options on all sizes, as they struggle to cover orders. Next week there will be little to no harvest for Holy Week. Market conditions are active and will remain high into May.
Avocado (California) We are seeing more California fruit available on the market. We are seeing some #1 and #2 grade options. Early season fruit will stay green externally when ripe. Always good to gauge ripeness by touch. Numbers are still down from last year at 90% as of last week.
Asparagus Not much has changed from last week. Supply out of Mexico is above than what we have seen in previous years which has caused prices and demand to be lower than usual for this time frame as we head into Easter push. We are anticipating movement to start to increase this week as some ads have started for Easter. Growers out of Caborca are finishing up closing fields due to seasonality. Obregon is still producing good numbers, we should see Obregon in thru May. Expect significant increase, Local grass projected around the 20th.
Strawberries The Easter pull for strawberries begins this week with only 11 days left before the holiday. Good demand has helped to move the more than adequate supplies in Oxnard and Santa Maria. Shippers are hoping the added demand for the holiday will help defray what is sure to be an excess in supplies in the coming week. The Salinas and Watsonville areas have already begun in a light way but will be increasing numbers steadily as we approach Easter. Markets are easier and quality is very good at this point. Promotable volume is available. Weather is expected to be cooler than normal but should not hinder harvest yields.
Broccoli The broccoli market has come off a bit with the nice weather in Yuma and Mexico and with Salinas underway. This warmer weather the next several days in Yuma and Mexico is helping to spur growth. Look for supplies to stay steady with the improved weather. Quality is good with slight purpling, some mechanical damage, and occasional yellow cast. Pricing will be increasing middle of the week
Brussels Sprouts The Brussels Sprout market continues to remain snug with supply being affected by the recent and current rains in Salinas and Oxnard. The quality has been affected by the rain and cold weather and sizing tend to run smaller due to this recent colder weather. Look for the Brussels Sprout market to remain tight going into next week.
Cauliflower Cauliflower continues to stay steady this week with more supplies coming on in Salinas as Yuma comes to an end. Overall, the quality is good with minor bruising and yellow cast with weights in the 25 to 28-pound level. Look for the market to take a jump going into next week.
Celery This market continues to be in a demand exceeds supply situation with all shippers. Unprecedented pricing on a daily basis continues in this marketplace. Escalated pricing at its highest continues to be in effect. Carton business is being filled by a variety of suppliers. Yuma is all but finished. Supplies in Mexico are light. Production in Oxnard/Santa Maria simply is not enough to meet the demands of the marketplace. This will continue throughout the month of April at a minimum. The quality is fair. Common defects include insects, mechanical, pith and leafy tops. Please note: customers limited to 2 cases.
Lemons District 1&2 (Central Valley & Southern California Coastal Region) continues to peak on 75ct/95ct/115ct. The foodservice sizes 165’s and smaller are tight, expect limited availability moving forward. Prices are firming up and looking to remain steady in the high $20’s low $30’s on choice and fancy fruit. The rain and cold weather brought on the larger fruit and smaller fruit is staying limited on sizing and green on the trees. Markets will continue to gradually climb on the small fruit as they become more limited. Pricing expected to increase a few dollars in the next few weeks.
Limes The lime roller coaster continues through the second week of April. Suppliers are thinking prices will go back up by the end of this week, and into next week. Realistically it’ll be day to day deal if that happens. Current supplies are dealing with border delays plus with next week is Holy Week in Mexico, supplies, and inbounds will be light. Suppliers will be doing their best to load up their coolers to have product available. Pricing expected to increase a few dollars.
Grapes (Green) No major changes from last week other than supplies are becoming increasingly limited. No new arrivals of fruit are expected for the remainder of the season. All shippers are utilizing storage crop to fill the demand. As volumes are low and being controlled closely, market prices continue to increase weekly. We saw another jump in price this week and expect it to climb moving forward. As we continue to move through the storage crop and look toward transition, we can expect quality to become a challenge. Currently, reports are good. However, with age, comes issues. We can expect fair quality, limited supplies and higher prices for the remainder of April. New harvest is expected to start in Coachella and Mexico by mid-May.
Lettuce Iceberg Yuma will be all but finished by the early next week with this commodity. Huron production is expected for another 2-3 weeks pending the weather. Production in Salinas has begun on the light side but numbers are expected to improve next week. The market is up and demand has risen. The weights on lettuce in Huron varies from 38-43 pounds. Some defect being reported out of the growing regions include small heads, ribby, mechanical, puffiness, and misshapen heads. Warm temperatures in the growing regions will continue. Expect some insect damage and visibility upon arrivals. This is industry wide. Salinas currently has had a minimal insect infestation. Pricing will see some small gains.
Lettuce Leaf Yuma is expected to be finished by the end of this week to early next week. These plants are tired. Huron and Salinas, as well as Santa Maria, will be the growing regions producing romaine as well as all leaf items. Overall demand has picked up and this market is stronger. The quality of romaine is fair, as well as all leaf items. Common defects reported include insect damage, mildew, light fringe burn, and discoloration being reported upon arrivals. Average quality will continue through the month of April, then expected higher quality will follow in the month of May. Pricing will see some small gains.
Cantaloupe Supplies have tightened up this week for both east and west, even more so on small sizes. (12,15,18). Higher market prices due to light supplies on offshore fruit. Mexico will start to harvest cantaloupes in about 2 weeks. Domestic fruit will be available mid to late May. Solid internal and external quality.
Honeydew The honeydew market is flat this week due to heavier supplies on both the east and west. Good run on all sizes. On the west, we are seeing more Mexican fruit versus offshore fruit. Domestic desert honeydews will be available mid-May. Mixed melons will also be available in mid-May.
Watermelon Light supplies of watermelon continue to be available to load in Nogales, AZ this week. The watermelon crop from Sonora, MX continues to arrive in a very light and is expected to continue through the week. Better supplies of seedless watermelon are expected to arrive in Nogales, AZ next week. The market on seedless watermelon is currently steady/high and is expected to remain steady/high until better supplies start to arrive.
Tomatoes A warm weather trend has helped boost production in new crops harvesting in Sinaloa to start the Spring season, however, demand exceeds the supply of imports resulting in nearly a 50% increase in the price of rounds this week. Roma tomato supplies are also short out of Mexico and have increased by a couple of dollars this week. Demand for Roma tomatoes has increased specifically from the threat of having to buy out east if imports are halted. Grape and cherry tomatoes remain widely available and remain at or near price minimums.
Mangoes: Quality is good and supplies will be tight through the Easter Holiday.
· Avocados will remain high
· Grapes tight, quality declining, off shore storage fruit. Mexico projected to start the second week of May.
· Limes expected to increase a few dollars
· Lemons expected to increase a few dollars in the next few weeks.
· Mangos tight through easter.
· Melons are on the way up end of the imports, desert projected to start first week of May.
· Asparagus will transition to California next week, expect significant increase, Local grass projected around the 20th.
· Celery will remain high, very tight, customers limited to 2 cases.
· Broccoli will be up by mid-week.
· Cauliflower taking a big jump
· Green bell up slightly
· Colored peppers
· Green Cabbage
· Leaf lettuce will see some small gains
· Iceberg lettuce will see some small gains