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Avocados from Mexico expects volume increase, 70 percent market share
During the 2013-14 crop year, which ran through June 30, the Mexican Avocado industry enjoyed a 66 percent market share in the United States. "With the good start we have seen this year, I think we are going to be around 70 percent of the market," Alvaro Luque, president of Avocados from Mexico, said in an interview with The Produce News. Avocados from Mexico... Read more
Navel crop expected to be shorter than in 2013, but Mandarins will be up
There will be no shortage of California Navel oranges during the early part of the 2014-15 season, although fruit size may be smaller than normal, according to Joel Nelsen, president of California Citrus Mutual in Porterville, CA, a trade industry group representing the interests of citrus growers primarily in the Central Valley. But he expects total citrus volume... Read more
Opportunities abound for garlic industry
ANAHEIM, CA — It’s been an interesting couple of months for garlic. U.S. restrictions on the importation of Chinese garlic have affected the domestic market and created an opportunity to shift the dynamics on a global level. Members of the garlic industry convened at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel, here, to talk shop and catch up with friends at the annual... Read more
On Sept. 7, Trent Bishop, sales manager of Lone Star Citrus Growers in Mission, TX, told The Produce News that there was some rain in the south Texas forecast, and the trees needed it. Three weeks later, he could be forgiven if he said “Enough already!” “Over the last 20 days of September, we got 15 inches of rain,” he said in mid-October. “It is a very good... Read more
Kurt Cappelluti, sales manager at Stellar Distributing Inc. in Madera, CA, said marketplace dynamics will be changing by the end of October as kiwifruit imports from Italy continue to arrive in the United States. "The glut is two weeks away," he told The Produce News Oct. 13. Stellar Distributing was established in the 1990s by parent company Catania Worldwide,... Read more
The U.S. Department of Agriculture released its initial forecast for 2014-15, pegging the orange crop at 108 million boxes, up from last season's total of 104.4 million. Early-mid varieties accounted for 52 million boxes, while Valencias came in at 56 million boxes. "This is a positive number as the Florida citrus grower continues to battle citrus greening... Read more
Beneficial rains over the Red River Valley in late August and early September were setting the stage for good harvest conditions of the region’s red potato crop. Ted Kreis, marketing and communications director of the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association in East Grand Forks, MN, added that good harvest conditions, including a softening of the northern... Read more
Tarheel 2014 sweet potato harvest will be back to normal
BENSON, NC — North Carolina's sweet potato harvest, still in full swing at mid-September, is back to normal, and none too soon. After two years in a row of below-average acreage planted due to weather, the 2014 crop is growing on 66,000 acres. That's the USDA estimate cited by Sue Johnson-Langdon, executive director of the North Carolina Sweet Potato Commission,... Read more
“The weather in Louisiana has been great for this year’s sweet potato crop,” Rene Simon, executive director of the Louisiana Sweet Potato Commission, headquartered in Baton Rouge, LA, told The Produce News in mid-August. “Overall it’s been a really good growing season for our producers.” He said that the crop was planted a little late due to cool and wet weather,... Read more
Normal California kiwifruit crop expected as light Chilean season wraps up
The board of directors of the California Kiwifruit Administrative Committee, in a meeting July 23, approved an estimate for the total volume of California kiwifruit expected to be marketed from the 2014 harvest in the range of 6.8 million to 7 million seven-pound tray equivalents. In context, that would be considered “a normal production year,” according to... Read more
With Mexico ending a bit early, Brazil and then Ecuador will be the main sources for mango supplies for the last third of the 2014 calendar year. Typically, Mexico lasts well into September overlapping the Brazilian deal, which usually gets underway in August and has an eight- to 10-week shipping window before greater volume from Ecuador hits the market in late... Read more
California date harvest running one to two weeks early with good quality
“The crop is starting early this year,” said Lori Cooper,  manager of the California Date Administrative Committee in Indio, CA, in an interview with The Produce News Sept. 3. It is running anywhere from seven days to 14 days ahead of normal, “depending on where you are in the valley.” The California Date Administrative Committee is a federal marketing... Read more
In agriculture, weather often has the last word. Earlier in the growing season, it was appearing that the 2014 Idaho potato crop may come in early, size well, and have good yields. But August was unusually cool and wet in eastern Idaho where most of the state’s potatoes are grown, and that slowed down the growth of the tubers, leading some in the industry to... Read more
California Navel Orange Objective Measurement Report, issued by the California Department of Agriculture in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service, is a usually reliable estimate of California's Navel crop. The newest report, released Sept. 11, estimates the 2014-15 crop at 78 million 40-pound cartons,... Read more
Wisconsin potatoes enjoying strong start to 2014 season
The weather has been kind, providing Wisconsin potato growers with a very good summer production season. The earliest harvest started well in mid-August. Weather permitting, the growers expect a very good fall harvest.   “It’s been a great growing season. It’s gone real well,” said Mike Carter, chief executive officer of Bushmans’ Inc., in Rosholt, WI. Wisconsin’s... Read more
Potential for a record-setting apple crop looms large on Washington’s horizon
Washington apple producers are rising to the occasion, changing the notion of what the “new normal” is looking like for the state’s industry. This season, the Evergreen State is predicted to market 140.2 million 40-pound boxes of apples, another large crop and anticipated record-setter. Jon DeVaney, executive director of the Yakima Valley Growers-Shippers Association,... Read more
Much-hoped-for rain fell in Colorado's San Luis Valley this summer, giving the region's potato producers a much-needed respite from ongoing drought conditions and declining aquifer levels. "The San Luis Valley has had a decent year so far in terms of surface water flows. For the first time in the last several years, stream flow amounts were near normal through... Read more
Michigan’s apple growers will harvest approximately 28.74 million bushels of apples this year, according to the official crop estimate announced Aug. 22 at the USApple Outlook meeting in Chicago. This estimate is in line with the 2013 crop, which was a record size crop of 30 million bushels. “Michigan’s growers, packers and shippers are ready to get their apples... Read more
Peruvian sweet onion volume to show uptick this season
Exports of Peruvian sweet onions may grow by as 10 percent during the 2014-15 season. In late July, Miguel Ognio, chief executive officer for KeyPerú S.A., attributed the increase to increased land in production. According to Ognio, approximately 7,400 acres (3,000 hectares) of sweet onions were planted this season. The expansion is primarily occurring in Arequipa,... Read more
New York apple growers geared up for a second fabulous crop
"We convened on a conference call with our members across the state on July 25," Julia Stewart, spokesperson for the New York Apple Association headquartered in Fishers, NY, told The Produce News. They forecasted then that crop would be 30 million bushels, just slightly above our average of 29.5 million but not as high as our 2013 crop which was estimated at... Read more