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March 30, 2023

Bell Peppers

Green bell pepper markets have eased due to increased Florida supply and lighter demand. Markon First Crop (MFC) and Markon Essentials (ESS) Green and Red Bell Peppers are available.

Green Bells

  • Mexican spring crops are underway; past inclement weather has stunted fruit growth
  • Sizing is dominated by medium and large peppers
  • Mexico supply will remain adequate through April, before transitioning to the California desert growing region in early May
  • South Florida has moderate volume of jumbo/extra-large fruit with excellent quality
  • Expect lower prices over the next week

Red Bells

  • West Mexico has consistent supply from a mix of old and new crop; quality is inconsistent
  • Expect improved quality from the spring crop out of central Mexico in mid-April
  • Canadian greenhouse spring production is underway; quality is strong
  • Prices are slightly lower this week


Industry supplies will not sufficiently meet demand through the month of April. Expect elevated prices through next month.

Yuma, Arizona/Imperial and Santa Maria Valleys, California

  • MFC Broccoli is available in Yuma, Arizona; packer label is being substituted as needed to fill orders.
  • Supplies are beginning to diminish in the desert; decreased quality has reduced yields at the field level, driving prices higher
  • Production in Santa Maria is expected to be delayed by two to three weeks due to heavy rains, flooding, and cool weather
  • Many Salinas growers are preparing for a five to seven day harvesting gap in early to mid-April

Mexico (into South Texas)

  • MFC Broccoli is available
  • Prices are volatile but lower this week as weather conditions have been moderate
  • Demand is strong
  • Quality is very good; some mechanical damage has been noted along with occasional mildew

Brussels Sprouts

The market is rising; supplies crossing through U.S.-Mexican border have decreased and seasonal/Easter demand is strong.

  • Labor shortages and increased border inspections have created an artificial shortfall in the market
  • Holy week and Easter will decrease harvesting crews and customs personnel availability
  • Current size profile is skewed towards larger sizes, increasing prices for regular/medium packs
  • Overall quality is strong; insect pressure and off color are occasional issues
  • Product will continue to cross from Mexico until California production begins in Oxnard in May followed by Salinas in July
  • Expect stronger markets for the next 7-10 days as demand rises

Chipping potatoes

Chipping potato storage supplies are tightening. New crop harvesting typically begins early June in California.

Storage crop

  • To extend storage supplies, suppliers will be allocating or filling orders based on six-week averages
  • Suppliers are sorting through product that would normally be culled out in order to fulfill orders
  • Some operators may consider shifting to gold/yellow or Russet potatoes until new crop chipping potatoes become available
  • Remaining stocks will exhibit multiple quality concerns:
    • Discoloration
    • Thin skins
    • Pressure and shoulder bruising
    • Mixed sizing


Cilantro markets remain relatively low as multiple growing regions are in production, but prices are poised to rise amid reduced quality and lower yields.

  • Ready-Set-Serve (RSS) Washed & Trimmed Cilantro is available; packer label may be substituted due to quality defects over the next 10 to 14 days
  • Fast moving rain storms in Oxnard, California and high winds in Yuma, Arizona have stressed mature plantings leading to quality problems such as
    • Longer stem length in finished packs
    • Yellowing leaves
    • Early breakdown/reduced shelf-life
  • Some low lying areas in the Santa Maria and Salinas Valleys have been affected by flooding, impacting planting schedules and creating the potential for supply gaps in April and May
  • Expect markets to firm up through the first half of April; warmer spring weather will increase growth and improve quality, barring any major storm systems


Overall production remains slow in California due to wet and muddy conditions. Recent rainfall is producing larger lemons, creating less supply and higher markets for 140-count and smaller sizes. Florida orange season will be coming to an early end, pushing demand west over the next couple of weeks.


  • MFC and ESS Lemons are available  
  • Rain over the past couple of months is producing much larger fruit
  • Due to increased demand and a larger size profile in current crops, markets for 140- through 200-count stocks continue to climb
  • Quality remains excellent


  • MFC and ESS Navel Oranges are available
  • Larger sizes (48- to 72-count) remain limited; smaller sizes have better availability
  • Current quality remains excellent; sugar levels are high
  • Mexican Valencia volume is adequate (crossing into Texas); quality is fair
  • Limited supplies of Texas domestic Valencias are available; expect the season to wrap up in late April
  • Florida Valencia season will finish mid-April, four weeks ahead of schedule due to hurricanes and fruit drop


The Chilean/Peruvian offshore season will wrap up in mid-April. Grapes will transition to Mexican-grown product in early mid-April. Expect pricing to gradually increase as the offshore season winds down.


  • The Peruvian/Chilean green and red grape season will end in mid-April
  • MFC Lunch Bunch Grapes will stop shipping in mid-April
  • Expect tight supplies and rising markets through April


  • MFC and ESS Grapes will be available soon
  • Mexican green and red grapes are expected to begin shipping in mid-April
  • Mexican portioned grapes are forecast to begin shipping in mid-April
  • Expect elevated pricing to begin the season then markets will gradually decrease

Green Leaf, Iceberg, and Romaine

The Arizona and California desert growing regions are winding down for the season. Green leaf, iceberg, and romaine markets are poised to rise as transition to Huron, Oxnard, and Salinas, California begins.

  • MFC Green Leaf, Iceberg, and Romaine are available; Markon Best Available (MBA) is being substituted as needed due to elevated insect pressure
  • Many suppliers extended their seasons in the Arizona and California desert regions to mitigate supply gaps in Salinas caused by excessive rains and flooding in January and March
  • Cooler-than-normal temperatures forecast next week in the Arizona and California desert regions will help maintain quality of remaining product
  • Production in Huron and Oxnard, California will start next week
  • The majority of harvests in the Salinas Valley will begin in mid-April; some suppliers will start iceberg as late as the second week of May due to inclement weather delaying the season
  • Initial lots in Huron, Oxnard, and Salinas, California are expected to be packed in MBA due to low weights as temperatures continue to be unseasonably cool
  • Expect active markets through transition to Huron, Oxnard, and Salinas, California growing regions

Idaho Potatoes

Sufficient supplies of MFC Idaho Burbank and Norkotah Potatoes are available.

Storage Crop

  • Large sizes (40- through 70-count stocks) are tight; 90- through 100-count stocks are adequate
  • Quality remains excellent for both varieties; pack-outs favor No. 1 quality, with limited No. 2 availability
  • Prices are expected to rise as Norkotah stocks begin to wind down in late May; Burbanks will be the sole variety for the remainder of the season
  • Limited Burbank stocks are expected to ship through mid- to late July

New Crop

  • New crop planting normally gets underway in mid-April
  • Snow could delay plantings in some regions
  • Growers are hoping to see spring-like weather in April in order to plant the crop by May
  • Norkotah harvesting and packing would normally begin early to mid-August


Lime pricing is climbing rapidly; demand is exceeding supply out of Veracruz, Mexico. MFC and ESS Limes are sporadic.

  • Supplies are limited in the Veracruz growing region
  • Recent rains and cool weather have reduced yields and are keeping new crop size small
  • Crops remain dominated by 200- to 250-count sizes; due to increased quality, No. 2-grade limes remain in short supply
  • Expect higher markets and tight supplies to persist into April; Holy Week will reduce labor and harvesting
  • Markon recommends increased lead time to ensure order fulfillment

Mixed Berries

Blueberry supplies will tighten over the next five to seven days due to rain in the Baja growing region.


  • Yields have decreased in Baja, Mexico due to recent rain, but are expected to uptrend once weather recovers
  • Stocks remain strong in Central Mexico as the crop reaches the back end of the spring peak
  • The Florida season has been slightly delayed but is forecast to increase each week as weather improves
  • Expect tight supplies over the next five to seven days as Baja, Mexico rebounds from recent rains


  • Volume is expected to increase slightly compared to previous weeks due to production uptrends
    • Supply levels will continue to climb in Central Mexico
    • volume will continue increasing in Baja, Mexico and reach peak season in early May
    • Oxnard, California stocks will remain minimal but are expected to uptrend over next two weeks


  • Most fruit is being sourced in Central Mexico at this time
  • Stocks will increase week over week until reaching their peak in mid-April
  • Domestic supplies are minimal but expected to increase in mid-May
  • Stocks are sufficient


Rain and cool weather in all California growing districts continue to reduce yields. Production is winding down in Mexico (into South Texas) and Florida, as both regions are entering the end of their seasons. Expect strong demand and tight supplies.

Supply levels will plummet further than expected for the next two weeks. California will ship historically low volume, while production in Florida and Mexico (into South Texas) is coming to an end. The industry will be in an extreme demand-exceeds-supply situation for the next two weeks.

Oxnard/Santa Maria

  • Additional rain along with cool temperatures will continue to hinder yields
  • Growers will be challenged with hail and high wind which will be problematic over the next two weeks
  • Regions have received 19.50-22.75” of rain since start of the new year
  • This is more rainfall than during the last three years combined
  • The market is and will be in an extreme demand-exceeds-supply situation for the foreseeable future

Central Mexico (Loading in South Texas)

  • Temperatures remain elevated in the upper 80’s to lower 90’s; crews are only able to harvest until noon due to the heat
  • Higher rejection rates, at the border, due to heat-related quality issues are exacerbating the shortage; crews must discard more fruit than they are packing
  • The season will wrap up in the next one to two weeks
  • The market is and will be in an extreme demand-exceeds-supply situation for the foreseeable future


  • Production continues to decrease; the season is winding down rapidly
  • Estimated daily harvest numbers continue to come up short, resulting in a supply shortage
  • Growers are trying to stretch the season into next week, weather pending
  • The market is and will be in an extreme demand-exceeds-supply situation for the foreseeable future


New crop squash fields in Sonora, Mexico are increasing overall supply. MFC Zucchini and Yellow Squash are available.

  • Mexican Spring crops in the state of Sonora are underway
    • Supplies are increasing
    • Quality is improving
    • Yellow squash markets have decreased significantly
  • Florida has light production starting in Plant City
    • The full transition from South Florida regions will occur in mid-April
    • Zucchini supplies are adequate
    • Yellow squash is limited due to quality concerns
  • Expect lower prices over the next two weeks

Sweet Baby Broccoli

Sweet baby broccoli supplies remain extremely scarce; demand exceeds supply.

  • Salinas Valley stocks are extremely limited
  • Continued heavy rains, high wind, and lower-than-average temperatures have reduced yields in February and March
  • Suppliers have cut back harvesting days due to wet fields, as well as to allow plantings to mature, further reducing available cases
  • Markon inspectors are seeing more product from the fields week over week, starting with this week (March 20)
  • The revised expectation for shipping all contract orders at 100% of fill rate is now the week of April 3; open market April 10
  • Expect elevated markets into the middle of next week, with one more rain event on the horizon before drier spring weather arrives and aids growth

Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.

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