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December 15, 2022


Artichokes are extremely limited. Recent cold weather, especially low nighttime temperatures, have drastically reduced maturation and caused a burned appearance on leaf tips due to overnight ice accumulation. Suppliers are primarily packing 12-count sizes, allowing flower size to increase before harvesting.

  • Expect low volume out of all growing regions through the end of the year
    • Oxnard, California is the primary growing region right now, with orders being supplemented out of Castroville
    • Coachella Valley growers will begin limited production by the middle of next week
    • Mexican supplies will begin ramping up by the end of the month
  • Expect more abundant stocks mid-January as current harvesting strategies pay off and weather warms in Mexico and the Arizona/California desert regions

Consecutive Day of Lettuce Ice

The Arizona/California desert growing region has experienced its third consecutive day of heavy lettuce ice this week affecting iceberg and leafy green crops. Continued harvest crew delays of up to three hours with start times at roughly 10:00 AM PST. Expect potential loading delays and later-than-normal transfers to the consolidation dock.

Epidermal peeling (possibly discolored peel) is expected to arise in finished packs by the end of December. Markon inspectors will continue to update on the long-term effects of lettuce ice on the iceberg and leafy green crops over the next few weeks.


The California season will wrap up in late December. Expect pricing to gradually increase as the California season winds down. Delays are being reported in offshore arrivals; expect tight supplies through the month of January.


  • Markon First Crop and Essentials Grapes are available
  • California green and red grapes are expected to be in season until late December
  • California portioned grapes are forecast to be in season until late January
  • Quality is good; some rain-damaged fruit is being reported
  • Expect pricing to gradually increase through the end of the California growing season


  • Offshore Peruvian/Chilean green grapes are expected to begin shipping in late December
  • Offshore Peruvian/Chilean portioned grapes will start shipping in late January
  • Chilean harvests are behind schedule due to weather
  • Political turmoil in Peru has caused shipments to be halted for the last two weeks
  • Expect tight supplies and rising markets through January on all grapes due to these delays


Green leaf and romaine supplies are increasing in the Arizona and California desert growing regions. Supplies have improved compared to prior weeks. Prices are falling.

Green Leaf

  • Markon First Crop (MFC) Premium Green Leaf is available; Markon Best Available (MBA) is being substituted occasionally due to light case weights
  • Quality is very good; wind damage on outer leaves is being trimmed at harvest
  • Markets are much weaker and will continue to decline in the coming weeks


  • MFC Premium Iceberg is not available; MBA is being substituted due to low case weights
  • Quality is good; growth crack is present in some lots as suppliers attempt to add size and weight by applying additional fertilizer and water inputs
  • Mildew pressure and fluctuating densities are present in some lots
  • Weights have improved from prior weeks but remain below ideal ranges
  • Prices are much lower


  • MFC Premium Romaine is being packed regularly; MBA is being substituted as needed due to low case weights
  • Quality is very good; fringe burn and epidermal blister/peel are present in some lots
  • Markets are lower

Northwest Onion & Potato Holiday Loading Hours

Northwest onion and potato suppliers will be operating on limited hours through Christmas and New Year’s Eve and closed on Christmas and New Year’s Day.

  • All potato and onions suppliers will be closed on Christmas and New Year’s Day
  • Shippers will be operating with regular loading hours on the Fridays leading up to the holidays, December 23 and December 30
  • On Saturday, December 24 and December 31 onion and potato sheds will be closed; this is unlike normal loading hours
  • Most sheds will be closed on Monday, December 26 and January 2 in observance of the holidays; this is also different than normal loading schedules
  • Advanced order lead time is highly recommended for order fulfillment
  • Carriers are strongly advised to call packing sheds in advance for product availability and loading appointments
  • Adverse weather is forecast in much of the Northwest the next few weeks, which will affect outbound trucks
  • Also important to note: Tuesday, December 27 and January 3 will be very slow loading days as suppliers will not produce over the holiday weekends

Peru Shutdown

Yesterday, December 14, Peru’s government declared a 30-day national emergency shutdown due to acts of vandalism and violence throughout the country. Peru’s supply chain of fresh fruits and vegetables will be impacted with port closures throughout the country. Over the past decade, Peru has become a major exporter of several fruit and vegetable categories. The below commodities may be impacted over the next 30 to 60 days by the lack of Peruvian supplies on the global market.

  • Asparagus
  • Blueberries
  • Grapes
  • Mangos
  • Peas


Extremely low temperatures are hitting Eastern and Southern Idaho. Temperatures need to be 18°F or higher for five to seven hours to haul potatoes from cellars to packing sheds.

  • Suppliers do not haul potatoes to packing sheds when temperatures are below 18°F to avoid freezing raw product
  • Expect reduced production and delayed loading; advanced order lead time is highly recommended for order fulfillment
  • Many suppliers will utilize onsite storage to cover orders; sizing may be limited
  • Expect prices to push upward through the Christmas holiday


Harvest has been cancelled in the Santa Maria and Oxnard growing regions Monday, December 12 through Tuesday, December 13, due to rainfall. Supplies out of South Texas and Florida continue to increase, helping fill the void from California.

Santa Maria, California

  • The region received upwards of 2.00” of rain this past weekend
  • Harvesting has been canceled Monday, December 12 through Tuesday, December 13; expect possible limited harvesting to return Wednesday, December 14
  • Packer label will be substituted as needed; plastic clamshells will be substituted for the corrugated packs
  • The season will end on December 31, 2022
  • Expect strong demand and elevated markets through the month of December

Oxnard, California

  • The region received upwards of 1.00” to 1.50” of rain this past weekend
  • Harvesting has been canceled Monday, December 12 with a possibility of limited harvesting to return on Tuesday, December 13
  • Packer label will be substituted as needed; plastic clamshells will be substituted for the corrugated packs
  • Expect strong demand and elevated markets through the month of December

Central Mexico (Loading in South Texas)

  • Mexican production is increasing
  • Mexican fruit is being used to supplement the California shortage
  • Quality is good; white shoulders and occasional overripening are issues
  • Expect to see markets decline as production moves into full swing


  • Harvesting will increase over time and is expected to reach its peak by mid-December
  • Early quality is good; expect small-to-medium size fruit
  • Expect to see markets slowly decline as this region reaches its peak


Tomatoes markets are beginning to ease due to favorable growing conditions in Mexico. Markon First Crop (MFC) Tomatoes are limited; packer label will be substituted as necessary.

  • The Mexican growing region of Culiacan experienced warm temperatures in early December, aiding plant growth
    • Round and Roma tomatoes will start in a limited manner this week and build to favorable numbers by the end of December
    • Grape tomatoes supplies are improving this week; cherry tomato supplies are tight
  • Central Mexico and the Baja peninsula are winding down; quality is average
  • The Florida regions of Ruskin/Palmetto and Immokalee have light volume and smaller sized fruit
    • New crops planted after hurricane Ian will start in Naples on December 25; normal winter volume coming January 1
  • Expect prices to gradually decrease over the next two weeks

Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.

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