While California desert shipments may not be exactly enormous, vegetable loadings are now taking place out of California’s Coachella Valley and the nearby Imperial Valley.
Green bean and bell pepper loadings have been increasing lately as the California winter desert vegetable shipments gear up. Grower-shippers in the state’s Coachella and Imperial valleys expect adequate volume with mixed vegetables and leafy greens.
Cauliflower shipments will be on a bit of a roller coaster ride bringing back memories of volatility of that crop last summer when it was coming out of Salinas.
Coachella’s Prime Time International was cranking up its green bean loadings prior to Thanksgiving, while its green pepper shipments got started in October. Green peppers are now being joined by red peppers. Green bell pepper production in the California desert was already well underway as November began, but red bells were just kicking off November 1st.
In the Imperial Valley, Coastline Family Farms at Brawley has just started harvest of mixed vegetables, with head lettuce kicking off around December 5th. Starting last week was Pacific International Marketing with conventional spinach in Brawley and El Centro, CA, with organic lettuce and conventional broccoli just now getting underway.
Desert artichoke loadings will begin in late November from Ocean Mist Farms, which is headquartered in Castroville, CA. Shipments should continue into the second week of March. The shipper now grows over 30 vegetables in the desert and has doubled its brussels sprouts acreage. Ocean Mist also for the first time will ship Coachella Valley-grown head lettuce to supplement its production in Yuma, AZ. The company started shipping romaine hearts, leafy greens and broccoli in mid November, with cauliflower getting underway right after Thanksgiving.
California’s Imperial Valley and nearby Yuma, AZ – shipments of head, romaine and leaf lettuce, as well as broccoli, cantaloupe and honeydew – grossing about $4900 to Atlanta.