Southeastern Produce Shipments Hit Hard by Rains

Southeastern Produce Shipments Hit Hard by Rains

DSCN1782Poor quality peaches, and poor tasting, waterlogged watermelons are a few examples of how heavy rains have affected many produce crops in the South.

The Southeast had its second-wettest January through July on record.  South Carolina has had more rain at this point in the year than in almost 50 years.      Some South Carolina shippers have lost up to 25 percent of their peach crops.

Georgia has seen the heaviest rains, about 40 percent more than usual at this point in the year.  Peach growers in the Fort Valley, GA area got lucky and escaped most of the excessive rains, with peach shipments all but over for the season.

If you haul  Georgia pecans, loadings could be seriously affected this fall and winter.  Pecan scab disease affects stem, leaf and nut growth, causing reduced yields — and loading opportunities.  The disease is extremely susceptible to moisture.

Further south in Georgia, around Tifton and on towards the Florida state line, there has been tremendous amounts of rain. The regions has had 55 to 62 inches since the first of the year compared to about  17 inches this time a year ago.  As result, fall vegetable shipments could be off significantly.

Specifically, this could hurt loadings of  bell peppers, cantaloupe, broccoli, squash, cucumbers and tomatoes.