News and Stories

UPDATE: Strawberries

January 12, 2017

Markon First Crop (MFC) Strawberries are not available; Markon Best Available (MBA) and packer label are being substituted.


California continues to be impacted by rain; supplies remain extremely limited. Rain-related quality issues are severe, forcing many suppliers to designate fruit for local markets or freezer/processors. Light showers ended harvest early today and more rain is forecast for Wednesday, January 18 through Friday, January 20. Supplies are expected to remain tight for the start of Valentine’s Day pull. Prices will remain steady to slightly higher through next week.


Stocks in Florida and Mexico are tightening due to California shortages. Availability and quality is best out of Mexico (loading in South Texas).


The overall market is rising and expected to remain elevated through Valentine’s Day (Tuesday, February 14). Markon recommends ordering out of Mexico (into South Texas) for best coverage and quality.


Santa Maria, California

  • This region is in a production gap between the fall and spring harvests
  • New crop spring harvesting will begin in a very limited way in early February, pending weather
  • This region is not expected to play a role in Valentine’s Day demand coverage 

Oxnard, California

  • MFC and MBA Strawberries are not available; packer label is being substituted due to rain
  • Approximately 0.75” of rain fell this past weekend with another 0.25” expected today, January 12
  • Volume remains very low; harvesting has been delayed
  • Many suppliers are only selling fruit in local markets or sending it to freezer/processing facilities
  • The following rain-related issues will continue to be difficult for harvesting crews to avoid:
    • Bruising
    • Decay
    • Shortened shelf-life
    • Water damage
    • Wind damage
  • Overall size ranges from medium-plus to large; counts average 15-18 berries per 1-pound clamshell
  • More rain is forecast for Wednesday, January 18 through Friday, January 20; expect order coverage to be extremely difficult in California


  • Production is below-normal due to cooler weather and a transition between blooms and varieties
  • The low temperatures are keeping overall quality good (with fewer arrival issues), but slowing growth
  • Sizing ranges from medium to medium-plus; counts average 18-22 berries per 1-pound clamshell
  • Rain is in the forecast for Thursday, January 19 and Friday, January 20; expect quality and supply levels to be impacted
  • Prices are climbing; expect limited stocks through Valentine’s Day

Mexico (loading in South Texas)

  • MBA Strawberries are available in 2/4-pound clamshells; packer label supplies in 8/1-pound clamshells are being substituted as needed
  • Protests for rising fuel prices in Mexico continue to affect some shipments into South Texas
  • Supplies are tightening due to strong demand in Texas; California and Florida stocks are tight
  • Overall quality is good: occasional problems include bruises, dark spots, and white shoulders
  • Overall size is medium; counts average 20-24 berries per 1-pound clamshell
  • Prices are lower than in California and Florida, yet starting to climb
  • Markon recommends ordering out of South Texas through Valentine’s Day for best coverage and quality

Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.


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