News and Stories

FROM THE FIELDS: San Joaquin Valley Onion Quality

July 17, 2015


Markon First Crop (MFC) Red and Yellow Onions remain available in California’s San Joaquin Valley growing region. The crop is approximately two weeks ahead of the harvesting schedule due to ideal growing conditions. Growers will wrap up the season the week of August 17. Packer label white onion stocks are available also. With temperatures in the 90s and low 100s for the next 10-days, stocks will increase and cure quickly once harvested.


Last week, onions were subjected to rain and wind in the fields. The combination of extremely wet soil and strong wind will cause some skin discoloration (also known as staining—see attachment), but overall quality will remain good.   


The crop is dominated by jumbo, colossal, and super colossal sizes. Spring/summer onions are milder in flavor, lighter in color, possess feathery skins, and softer texture compared to varieties ordered from the Northwest the rest of the year.


When onions are harvested from the field in warm temperatures, they are sorted at the packing house. Most supplies are then pre-cooled in cold storage areas where temperatures range from 42 to 45 degrees. Later, stocks are packed into refrigerated trucks with comparable temperatures. If cold storage is unavailable at the packing house, onions are exposed to strong airflow generated by large, industrial-size fans.


Expect the market to remain steady through this week, then start easing into August. 


Onions from New Mexico will remain on the market through mid-August. Markon does not anticipate a supply gap as the industry transitions to the Northwestern regions early next month. Colorado, Utah, and Washington supplies will start shipping the week of August 3 and Idaho/Oregon stocks will become available the week of August 10.


Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.


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