Market Minute: Seasonal produce transitions still adjusting
The crop shift from one farming area to another is in a conversion phase. This has caused a slightly lighter supply of some items that may last until the middle of January. However, there should be some steady items available to promote in ads right now.
Green Seedless Grapes: We are now into some new crop grape imports out of Peru and some from South America. This can help fill the gap between California and the winter product. The pricing may be on the high side, but the quality is excellent as always on a new crop.
Imported Cherries: Chile is shipping some excellent quality cherries just in time for your Christmas holiday promoting. The crop is a bit lighter due to some slight inclement rains, but the costs should lower as heavier harvests take place. January imports should open up for some excellent ad promotion opportunities, so get ready for it.
Desert Lettuce: Cooler nights are good for lettuce growth, but sizing and weights are erratic at this point. Some shippers are a few steps behind, but it should get better if the weather cooperates. Remember all the freezes we experienced last season? Let’s hope we can escape those issues this year. But El Nino is hovering over the Pacific waiting to strike again. We’ll have to keep an eye in that direction in order to plan promotions down the road.
Melons: Honeydews and cantaloupes have changed over to offshore imported product. The initial supplies are lighter with larger sizes on cantaloupes. The interior quality is reported as very good.
We recommend you stay on top of the product from all the new crop areas with your suppliers in order to plan promotions accordingly. Product availability is getting better as long as the weather complies with our needs. Stay positive and be aggressive in promoting for exceptional sales.
Ron Pelger is a produce industry adviser and industry writer. He can be contacted at 775/843-2394 or by e-mail at [email protected].