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February 23, 2023


February 23, 2023


Forecasts call for rain in California’s citrus growing regions over the next seven days. Growers have been harvesting in front of these storms to keep supplies elevated as production will be limited during this weather event. Markets are expected to rise next week. Advanced ordering is recommended for orange coverage going into next week (2/27-3/4).


  • Markon First Crop (MFC) and Essentials (ESS) Lemons are available  
  • Production continues in the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California
  • Rain will slow production in the Central Valley; expect adequate supplies out of Southern California
  • Markets are expected to climb into next week due to increased demand for Lenten season
  • Quality remains excellent

California Oranges

  • MFC and ESS Navel Oranges are available
  • Rain in California will limit crews’ ability to harvest for the next seven days; orchards need at least two days without rain to harvest
  • Growers have picked ahead of the rain for orders this week; those supplies will diminish by week’s end
  • Demand is expected to exceed supply next week; advanced ordering is recommended
  • Current quality is excellent; sugar levels are high

Texas Oranges

  • Domestic Valencias are available
  • 72-count and smaller supplies are steady
  • Quality is average with light orange color and some blemishes
  • Mexican Valenicas are crossing into South Texas
  • Supplies are abundant; mostly small sizes are available
  • Good brix levels with light color and minimal blemishes are being reported

Florida Oranges

  • Domestic Valencias available
  • Expect light supplies this week due to grove transitions
  • Quality is good; pale appearance is being reported

From the Fields: High Winds in Desert Region

The Arizona and California desert growing region is experiencing high wind gusts of up to 40-60 MPH that started Tuesday afternoon and carried through this morning. A wind advisory is in effect and expected to continue through most of today. As a result of the current weather conditions, Markon suppliers are reporting harvesting challenges and cancellations.

Markon inspectors are assessing fields for quality challenges such as:

  • Dehydration
  • Elevated levels of dirt
  • Fringe burn
  • Wind damage

From the Fields: Light Lettuce Ice in the Desert Regions

Arizona and California desert growing region dipped into the mid-30°s to low-40°s this morning, causing sporadic light lettuce ice to form. Harvesting and loading delays are minimal, but forecast calls for more lettuce ice, Friday, February 24 followed by showers, Saturday, February 25.

Despite recent weather challenges, the quality of lettuce items has been very good. Markon inspectors are assessing supplies closely and will update further with any developments.

Green Onions

Green onion supplies are decreasing in Mexicali, Mexico. Markets are poised to increase sharply through mid-March.

  • Ready-Set-Serve (RSS) Washed & Trimmed Green Onions are available
  • Persistently cold weather has limited growth and impeded the product pipeline
  • Demand remains strong, pushing prices higher as yields decline
  • Expect markets to steadily increase, potentially as much as 50-75% above current levels, into March

Idaho Potatoes – Cold Weather Forecast

Extremely low temperatures persist in 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
  • Growers do not ship potatoes to packing sheds when temperatures are below 18 degrees because that can cause internal and external bruising as well as black skins and flesh (located on the outer edges of potatoes and just under their skins)
  • 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; size range may be limited
February/March 2023   Idaho Falls, ID  –  Local Weather
Feb 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 1
Hi:  17° Hi:  22° Hi:  23° Hi:  29° Hi:  34° Hi:  31° Hi:  14° Hi:  20° Hi:  25° Hi:  24° Hi:  27° Hi:   26° Hi:  25° Hi:   28°
Lo:  -3° Lo:  -1° Lo:   7° Lo:  21° Lo:  29° Lo: 12° Lo:  -6° Lo:  -1° Lo:   0° Lo:   6° Lo: 10° Lo:    7° Lo:   8° Lo:   12°


Supplies continue to further tighten causing prices to jump. Markon First Crop (MFC) and Markon Essentials (ESS) Limes are limited; packer label is being substituted as needed.

  • Cold winter weather and rain continue to tighten stocks in Veracruz, Mexico
  • New crop volume is ramping up but overall yields will remain limited, which is common this time of year
    • Improved quality of new crop fruit is reducing availability of choice-grade limes
  • Supplies are dominated by 200- to 250-count size No 1.-grade limes
  • The market is poised to keep rising into March; increased lead time is recommended to ensure order fulfillment

Onions – Seasonal Transitions

The Northwest storage onion season will end this spring. Please see key dates and timelines regarding each region below.


  • Idaho/Oregon-grown MFC Onions will ship into mid-April, with some suppliers expected to be depleted by early April
  • Utah-grown MFC Onion stocks will be depleted by mid-March
  • Washington-grown MFC Onions will begin to wind down in early April
  • The Colorado storage season will conclude on Saturday, March 4

South Texas

  • Texas-grown MFC Yellow Onions will be available to ship the week of March 6; red and white onion production will begin the week of March 13
  • Sufficient supplies of Mexican onions are crossing into South Texas

Other regions

  • California MFC Onions are forecast to become available from the Imperial Valley the week of April 24
  • The MFC New Mexico season is slated to open in early June

Strawberries – Heavy Rain

California’s weather forecast, as of Wednesday, February 22, is calling for heavy rain in Santa Maria and Oxnard, California Thursday, February 23 through Tuesday, February 28. All Member DCs are advised to load out of South Texas or Florida for best possible coverage.

Santa Maria, California 

  • Two to three inches of rain could fall in a five-day span
  • If the forecast comes to fruition, harvesting will be canceled, potentially causing a demand-exceeds-supply market in California

Oxnard, California

  • MFC Strawberries are available
  • Packer label will be substituted as needed
  • Two to three inches of rain is expected over a a six-day span
  • If the forecast comes to fruition, harvesting will be canceled, potentially causing a demand-exceeds-supply market in California

Central Mexico (Loading in South Texas)

  • Expect to see yields decline due to heat-related quality issues
  • Quality is average; soft fruit and bruising have been reported
  • Size currently ranges from small to medium (18 to 20 berries per one-pound clamshell)
  • Expect to see supplies tighten as Mexico fills shortages from California


  • MFC Strawberries are available
  • Yields will increase daily as the season approaches its peak
  • Quality is good; some white shoulders are being reported
  • Expect abundant supplies and easing prices


Mexican zucchini is abundant; markets are low. Yellow squash prices are higher. Markon First Crop (MFC) Zucchini and Yellow Squash are available.

  • Growers in Western Mexico are shipping ample zucchini stocks; however, yellow squash volume is low due to last week’s inclement weather
    • Expect most growers to transition from Sinaloa to Sonora during the first week of March
  • Florida squash supplies are adequate despite the fact that winter crops are past peak production; spring production is expected to start in Plant City in three to four weeks
    • Zucchini quality is good
    • Scarring and scuffing issues are being observed in yellow squash
  • This week’s favorable weather will keep markets stable

Sweet Baby Broccoli

Sweet baby broccoli supplies are extremely scarce. MFC and RSS Sweet Baby Broccoli are limited; packer label is being substituted as needed.

  • The majority of sweet baby broccoli is grown year-round in the Salinas Valley; a small amount is grown in the Arizona/California desert during the winter months
  • Salinas Valley yields continue to be far below normal due to sustained cooler-than-normal temperatures
  • Quality is good despite growing condition challenges; some lots are exhibiting purple shade caused by cold temperatures
  • A series of upcoming rainstorms followed by warmer weather in the Salinas Valley will help promote growth
  • Supplies will remain limited through mid-March; stocks are expected to increase significantly in late March

Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.

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