News and Stories

UPDATE: Strawberries

December 16, 2015


The Santa Maria, California growing region experienced freezing temperatures and wet weather this week, bringing the fall crop to an end for some suppliers. Stocks in Oxnard, California remain extremely limited while the season slowly ramps up. Markon recommends loading Mexican fruit in South Texas for best availability at this time.


Santa Maria, California

  • Markon First Crop (MFC) Strawberries are not available; Markon Best Available (MBA)—in one-pound clamshells—and/or packer label are being substituted
  • Rain this past weekend and temperatures in the low to mid-30s have caused some growers to end the fall season and focus on the Oxnard winter crop
  • Freezing temperatures are affecting yields and requiring growers to skip a day of harvesting to clean plants and allow fruit to ripen
  • Today’s orders were packed ahead yesterday; harvesting crews are scheduled for tomorrow
  • Quality issues such as light decay, softness, water damage, and white shoulders are concerns
  • Prices have eased as the season is winding down; expect production to end over the next several weeks
  • The Santa Maria region will harvest spring fruit in late February/early March, weather permitting

Oxnard, California 

  • MFC Strawberries are not available; limited quantities of MBA—in one-pound clamshells—and/or packer label are being substituted
  • The Oxnard winter crop remains tight; temperatures as low as the mid-30s have slowed growth and kept yields very low
  • Crews are only harvesting three to four days per week
  • Quality is very good: size is medium to medium plus
  • The market is commanding higher prices for new crop fruit
  • Prices are steady, but poised to rise


  • Fruit is crossing the Mexican border into South Texas daily; supplies are adequate
  • Quality is good; size has increased
    • Minor problems include bruising, decay, over ripeness, and small size
    • Size is medium
    • Counts range from 26 to 30 berries per one-pound clamshell
  • Most suppliers are only shipping full pallet quantities (108 cases per pallet)
  • Prices are steady to slightly higher than last week and poised to rise


  • Supplies are sufficient; the season is ramping up
  • Overall supplies are increasing, but there remains a wide range in quality
    • Problems include bleeding, bruising, light decay, and small size
    • Overall size ranges from small to medium
    • Counts average 28 to 34 berries per one-pound clamshell with a few lots as high as 45
  • Only one-pound clamshells are available at this time
  • The market is steady to slightly higher

Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.


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