Grapes, Tree Fruit and Citrus Market Report February 20 to February 26
The red seedless volume will continue to arrive as we hit the peak of the import season in March. As Chile comes on stronger, Peru will waiver due to struggles shipping through political chaos. This will help keep inventories moving and not building like usual this time of the year. Expect Peru to still struggle through the end of their crop. Chile will come on strong with Timco, Sweet Celebration and some early Allison. FOB pricing has come down to what looks to be an equilibrium point and allow for promotions. Continue to push.
Late February and early March will see the peak of the conventional green seedless crop from Chile. Even with Peru winding down on their final volumes of the season, Chilean harvest will build. Chile will be a combination of Thompson, Sugraone, Ivory and Timpson for the time being. Expect good arrivals over the next 3 – 4 weeks to both coasts, then transition into the late season storage crop. Due to heat, it looks like the green crop will pick / ship faster then usual, making for good availability in mid-March but the storage crop in April expected to be limited and high priced. Avoid promoting in April and wait for a solid Mexico start in mid-May.
Black seedless volume slowly increases, with Sweet Favor and Melody starting to arrive in better volume from Chile. Peru continues to struggle. Chile will kick in the strongest volume once Autumn Royal arrive in March. Continue to carry, but expect FOB’s to remain higher then red and green seedless due to lighter arrival volume and good demand.
Red globe availability has stabilized on both East and West Coasts, with Peru volume coming on fighting the vessel delays from political unrest. Expect some gaps between vessel arrivals that may slow down availability, but in general FOB pricing and availability are stable enough to continue mixing in red globe volume.
Tree Fruit – Imports
The peach crop has remained very limited to this point and kept FOBs very high to meet demand… but it looks like a little hope is on the water. Volume is increasing on the vessels over the next few weeks. This MAY finally bring enough yellow peach from Chile to fill the pipeline and allow for a 2 – 3-week window of decent availability. Then expect the crop to start slowing by mid-March and come to an early finish due to heat. At least increasing arrivals will allow for mixer volume to promote. Avoid white peach, as quality and volume has been extremely suspect this season due to heat waves in Chile.
Yellow nectarine looks to be flipping with yellow peach. What has been good availability on both coasts over the last month will now start slowing down on arrivals for a small gap period between varieties. Fruit will continue to arrive, but in lighter volume allowing the market to stabilize slightly. Expect another late push in mid-March before crop finish on yellow nect. White nectarine continues to arrive, but in light to moderate volume and expected to stay that way through the end of the season.
Limited at the start. Very small arrivals have started on both Black Splendor and Sapphire red plums. Expected to stay limited until better varieties start to harvest and volume builds. Use as a color break on day-to-day availability until volume increases.
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