Broccoli and Cauliflower
- Markon First Crop (MFC) Broccoli is available in Salinas, California
- Markets have peaked and are starting to ease
- Recent widespread quality issues, such as pin rot, are prevalent in multiple growing regions
- Markon Best Available (MBA) Broccoli is being shipped into South Texas; the quality of Central Mexican broccoli (shipped into South Texas) has improved, but insect pressure persists
- The overall market is softening due to a drop in demand; expect relatively elevated prices as growers continue to selectively harvest
- Expect better quality and lower markets when desert supplies begin shipping in mid- to late November
- Markon Essentials (ESS) Cauliflower is available in Salinas, California
- Supplies are increasing but remain tight as growers work through quality-challenged fields
- Quality is weak: pest and disease pressure are causing off-color and brown spotting
- Despite challenges, markets will continue declining over the next five to seven days
- Quality is forecast to improve
- Demand is weakening
Expect strawberry supplies to remain tight and markets elevated over the next two weeks as fields continue to recover from prior rainstorms.
- Supplies are extremely limited
- Remaining growers expect production to wrap up by mid- to late October
- Quality is average
- MFC Strawberries are available
- Growers continue culling rain-damaged fruit, leading to lower yields
- Quality is good: some green shoulders and soft fruit have been reported
- Size currently ranges from small to medium (20 to 22 per one-pound clamshell)
- Expect tight supplies and elevated markets for next two weeks
- MFC Strawberries are available
- Volume is very low as the season is just starting
- Early season quality is good: vibrant color is being reported
- Size currently ranges from small to medium (18 to 20 per one-pound clamshell)
- Expect tight supplies for the next three weeks as new crop slowly ramps up
- Ready-Set-Serve (RSS) Cilantro is available
- Favorable growing conditions in Southern California have led to increased yields and minimal quality concerns
- Temperate weather will increase availability over the next 7-10 days
- Expect lower and steady markets through October, barring any major storm systems
From the Fields: Salinas Valley Supply Challenges
MFC Green Leaf, Iceberg, and Romaine packs are extremely limited; MBA is being substituted as needed.
Significant soil disease and plant virus pressure over the past three months have come to a head in the Salinas Valley. Growers have experienced yield losses of 30% to 80% or more in many iceberg and leaf lettuce crops, forcing them into increasingly younger fields to salvage what product they can before disease or heat/rain-related issues cause further losses.
Case weights have plummeted in most lettuce crops. Some 24-count liner lettuce is currently weighing as low as 28-32 pounds; nearly 15 pounds under normal industry weight ranges. Supply challenges and shortages are expected for the next four to six weeks, or until the desert growing season is fully underway.
Markon inspectors continue to monitor fields and work with suppliers to secure the best product for Markon orders.
Green bean supplies will be extremely limited next week due to recent severe weather in growing regions. RSS Trimmed Green Beans are extremely tight; packer label is being substituted, as necessary.
- The Tennessee/Kentucky growing region continues to battle low yields/gaps as their season winds down
- Early Georgia supplies are light due to rain and cooler fall weather during the planting cycle
- Florida is reporting some crop loss (from Hurricane Ian), that will affect overall supply levels in late November
- Mexican volume remains low due to monsoon weather during September
- California yields are tight this season due to past heatwaves and rain; quality is poor
- The California desert season will start with light supplies October 21
- Expect higher prices and limited availability until new crops in Mexico start to produce in November
Demand for green onions remains strong, far exceeding supply. Industry volume is down 50-70% due to another storm last week.
- RSS Green Onions are limited; packer label is being substituted
- Thunderstorms in Mexicali, Mexico (the primary growing region) late last week led to widespread power outages, flooded fields, and hail-damaged crops
- Muddy, wet fields are slowing harvesting
- Onions will require extra time to dry before packing
- Wet onions will be soft and may develop rot and decay
- Reports of 30-50 acre ranches being completely lost due to storm damage have placed further stress on the market
- Several shippers could not get product packed and across the border this past weekend and early this week due to lack of power at sheds
- Muddy, wet fields are slowing harvesting
- Prices are climbing and will remain elevated through October
Iceberg and Romaine
- Iceberg and romaine supplies continue to be extremely limited
- Erratic weather patterns of extreme heat followed by rain have compounded quality issues
- Bottom rot, fringe burn, mildew pressure, seeder, and sun scald are present in current lots
- Fluctuating densities and extremely light weights are prevalent throughout the industry
- Impatiens Necrotic Spot Virus (INSV) and Sclerotinia disease pressure has forced suppliers to cut ahead of their scheduled harvests to minimize crop loss
- Expect elevated markets until transitions to Yuma, Arizona and California’s Imperial desert are completed in mid-November
The lime market continues to ease as weather improves in the main growing region of Veracruz, Mexico. Overall supplies are ample. MFC and ESS Limes are available.
- Veracruz, Mexico experienced several weeks of improved weather following the summer monsoon season in September
- Large sizes (110- to 150-count fruit) remain snug; supplies are dominated by smaller sizes (200- to 250-count limes)
- Quality is improving as new crop sizes up: light colored fruit, stylar, and oil spotting are being culled during the sorting process
- Markon recommends ordering for quick turns to maximize shelf-life
- Expect markets to continue to ease over the next 7-10 days before leveling out
Fresh-run, new crop MFC Norkotah Potatoes are currently be shipped out of Idaho and Washington.
- Norkotah quality remains good; skinning and excess moisture may be observed in fresh-run potatoes
- MFC Norkotah Potatoes will begin to ship out of storage the week of October 17
- New crop Burbank harvesting is expected to be completed October 14
- MFC Burbank Potatoes will be available once the sweat process is completed, approximately late October/early November
Tomatoes prices are elevated. Severe weather events in multiple tomato growing regions (Florida and Mexico) will cause unstable, rising prices through January 2023.
- The round and Roma tomato seasons are quickly winding down in North Carolina and Tennessee
- Growers in the North Florida region of Quincy (unaffected by Hurricane Ian) will start harvesting later this week; production will run through October
- Florida’s central and southern growing regions of Estero, Labelle, Ruskin, Naples, and Immokalee experienced major crop loss from Hurricane Ian
- Growers are still assessing damage and salvaging as much as possible
- Expect smaller tomatoes with scarring in November and December
- Grape/cherry tomatoes will rebound two weeks prior to round/Romas due to faster growing cycles
- The California round and Roma seasons will wind down over the next two weeks
- 105-degree weather and rain throughout September have greatly reduced overall quality
- Size is dominated by small tomatoes
- Mexico’s Baja Peninsula has limited volume of Roma, round, and grape tomatoes due to Hurricane Kay
- Western Mexico (Sinaloa region) experienced flash flooding damage from Hurricane Orlene that will lower December/January volume
- Eastern Mexico’s cherry, grape, round, and Roma supplies are expected to increase after the cool/rainy temperatures in early October
- Expect prices to escalate over the next two months
Please contact your Markon customer service representative for more information.
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