News and Stories


March 16, 2017


  • The Arizona desert season is winding down sooner than anticipated due to warmer-than-normal conditions; demand is shifting to California and Mexico
  • Growing regions in California (Oxnard, Santa Maria, and Salinas) were heavily impacted by rain and cold weather last month, reducing yields and affecting quality
  • While warmer weather in California is expected to improve quality, heat in the desert region will reduce yields by causing yellowing/browning and increasing insect pressure
  • Markon anticipates high prices; markets will reach first-tier trigger levels by early next week

Desert Growing Region Prices

  • There are one to two weeks left in the desert season; unseasonably warm weather in the region continues to push harvests further ahead of schedule
  • Lettuce and leafy green supplies will be limited through early May, as the Salinas Valley will not be able to harvest enough volume to cover demand
    • The cold, rainy weather the Salinas Valley experienced last month has taken its toll on crops
    • The first new crop plantings are scheduled to be harvested in late March/early April
  • Production will start in the Central Valley/San Joaquin Valley region in a light way next week; insect pressure and lower-than-normal weights will keep overall stocks limited at the beginning of the season
  • Prices continue to climb; the market is expected to remain in a demand-exceeds-supply scenario for the next three to four weeks

Idaho Potatoes

  • Markon First Crop (MFC) Idaho Burbank and Norkotah Potatoes are available
  • The Norkotah crop is diminishing and will be depleted by the end of April; Burbanks will be shipped exclusively starting in May until new crop, field-run Norkotahs are available in mid- to late August
  • Storage quality is good; pressure bruising and hollow heart are sporadic issues
  • Several storage sheds are not accessible by truck due to excess ground moisture from snow runoff; supplies will tighten over the next few weeks until growers can access the sheds


  • MFC and Markon Essentials (ESS) Lemons are sporadic; packer label is being substituted as needed
  • Heavy February rain in California’s primary growing regions has increased growth and fruit size
  • Supplies of 140-count and smaller sizes (all grades) are tightening
  • Expect prices to continue climbing through summer, until offshore and Mexican stocks hit the U.S. market


  • MFC and ESS Limes are available from Mexico (into McAllen, Texas)
  • Large-size limes (110- to 150 count fruit) are extremely limited
  • New crop quality is excellent, but as current stocks diminish, fruit will require more sorting for problems such as discoloration and scarring
  • Expect high markets from late March through early May as both the labor force and crop yields fall short of industry demand


  • MFC Red, White, and Yellow Onions in the Northwest are expected to remain on the market through the end of April
  • Limited supplies of packer label sweet and conventional yellow onions from Mexico (into Texas) are available
  • Texas-grown MFC Red, White, and Yellow Onions will enter the market in late March and remain available through May
  • California MFC Red, White, and Yellow Onions will become available the first week of May


  • Limited supplies of MFC Strawberries are available in California; packer label is being substituted as needed
    • New crop Oxnard and Santa Maria supplies are increasing
    • Stocks are tight, but will become more plentiful week after week if weather remains ideal
  • Most suppliers have finished crossing Mexican-grown strawberries into South Texas; the season is nearly finished
  • Production is winding down in Florida; the season is expected to end in late March
  • Prices are steady in California and slightly lower in Mexico and Florida

Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.

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