Grapes, Tree Fruit and Citrus Market Report May 15 to May 21
What appears to be a long dark winter has set in. Red seedless from Chile have cleaned up completely on both coasts. Huge demand wiped out the last red seedless at record levels. Not enough fruit arrived post-marketing in order to be anywhere close to meeting the movement needs to get the crop to the start of Mexico. Mexico is increasingly delayed due to cool weather during the early growing season, which sustained into early May. The first harvest is expected around 5/24, but it will take a considerable time for the harvest to pick up enough to pick the pipeline and allow for the industry to reverse the extremely short market. Hold promoting Mexico red seedless until 2nd week of June. And prepare for a hard gap for a few more weeks.
Green seedless from Chile have finished. Similar to red seedless, the industry will see a gap for another 7 – 10 days, but not as long as expected on reds. A small amount of early Perlettes crossed into the US at the end of last week, with mixed opinions due to size and quality. True green seedless will start this week with the first Early Sweets and Sweeties starting harvest and expected to start arriving into Nogales by 5/18 – 5/20. Harvest will be light at first until momentum builds on increased vineyards coming into maturity. Green will slowly gain the week of May 22nd, but true volume will start for promotions first week of June. Hold tight for a few days and expect a small gap until harvest allows to start loading trucks regularly.
Black seedless are done from Chile as well. Quality tailed off on the finish and allowed for a quick end. Similar to red seedless, the first blacks harvesting in Mexico are expected around 5/22, with true harvest volume not going until 1st week of June. Hold off on promoting until harvest volume picks up.
Virtually done for the season as well. Only a small amount remains, mostly on the East Coast. The lack of other colors will quickly clean up any remaining red globes. The gap will be long between growing regions, with Mexico not starting until late June on their first picks. Avoid promoting red globe.
Tree Fruit – Imports
Harvest has started in a light way, mostly in Arvin and Kingsburg / Hanford growing regions. Volume was light last week but expected to pick up slightly this week and really gain momentum the week of 5/22. Royal Tioga pack-outs have been poor due to quality, but that was caused by May rains. Once Brooks variety starts, expect pack-outs to gain and allow for increased availability. Harvest volume will start picking up right before Memorial Day to allow for promotion, in time to allow for ad promotions. FOB pricing is still staying high due to increased growing costs and lower early pack-outs. The best volume will be the last week of May and early June from CA. Expect the ability to promote in June the CA crop and move through an estimated 8.5 million case crops. Loss/damage due to rain is pending formal reports from the field.
Arvin and Kettlemen continue to start early harvest in a very limited way last week, peaking on small fruit in trays and volume fill. Cool overcast weather kept brix levels and size low at the start. White Peach is still waiting for start, but may be this week. Fruit is going to be small in size at the start. Avoid carrying until harvest actually shows signs of starting. No promotions volume until Central CA is in full swing in June. Expect a slightly better harvest this week, but still slow. Overall crop volume is going to be lighter then expected this season from CA.
Same thing as yellow peach. A very very light start last week, limited on pack volume and size. Expect harvest to slowly gain this week, but still peak on 64s and smaller. Still no true volume this week. Waiting for Zee Fire from Arvin in late May and leading to better harvest volume in mid-May from Central CA. Light promotions in late May but hold volume movement on both yellow and white nectarine until at least June. That is when to build momentum.
Plums are virtually done from Chile, with only a small amount of black plum trays left. Quality remains strong on remaining supplies. CA cooler weather will delay starts, with the first plum harvest not until the last week of May/start of June. Hold until harvest begins.
Kettlemen and Arvin started in a very light way, peaking on 84 ct 2 layers and smaller, with most fruit making it into 3 layers trays. The Patterson area will start this week, with some larger apricot growers starting to step up to the plate with the first harvest. Sizing is expected to remain solid, with mostly 70/72 and 80/84 ct. Currently, apricot is expected to be the best item to promote for the time being until other stone fruit varieties actually start the true harvest.
DLJ Produce is home to the finest and freshest produce nationwide. Our customers depend on our produce 365 days a year coast to coast. If you want to discuss fruits, vegetables, cold storage, organic produce or simply want to chat, give us a call today.