FROM THE FIELDS: SALINAS VALLEY HEAT SPIKE

June 9, 2022

California’s Salinas Valley is experiencing elevated temperatures that are expected to last through Sunday, June 12. Morning lows as high as the upper 50s° to low 60°s will be recorded and daytime highs will reach into the low to mid-80°s in coastal areas and as high as the upper 90°s to low 100°s with heat advisories in affect further inland.

Markon inspectors are closely monitoring commodity and value-added items for heat-related quality and/or shelf-life challenges such as:

 

  • Dehydration
  • Decreased shelf-life potential
  • Elevated insect pressure
  • Erratic plant growth
  • Growth cracks in lettuce
  • Internal burn in all lettuce items
  • Hollow core and/or pin rot in broccoli
  • Soft texture in strawberries
  • Sun scald or sun burn in iceberg and romaine

Markon suppliers are starting crews earlier in the morning to limit packing during peak temperatures and focusing on quick cut-to-cool times. Harvesting and processing crews will also be slowing down to look for and avoid any serious defects, but some may not be visible or completely avoidable. Maintaining the cold chain and ordering for quick turns will be critical for maximizing shelf-life, particularly in the aftermath of a heat event. The graphs below illustrate temperature ranges from coastal to inland areas of the Salinas Valley.

Salinas Valley Coastal Temperatures:

Salinas Valley Inland Temperatures:

Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.

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