Shipping Outlook: WA Apples, FL Tomatoes and Oranges

Here’s an update on Washington apples shipments, as well as Florida tomato shipments and Florida orange shipments.

Washington apple shipments now shows the total crop remaining in storages at 116.7 million boxes, down a fraction from 116.9 million a month ago and 117.1 million on January 1st. Record apple shipments occurred in 2014 totaling 141.8 million boxes.

The 2015 crop is 54 percent, 62.9 million boxes, shipped versus 54 percent a year ago and 56.7 percent two years ago. Weekly shipments are averaging a healthy 2.5 million boxes.

Florida Tomato Shipments

Abnormal winter storms have caused shortages of all Florida grown produce. Damaging winds, heavy rains and even tornadoes have crossed the state nearly every week since the holidays. About 80 percent of the tomatoes in the U.S. are currently coming from Mexico.  Meanwhile, Florida production and shipments of tomatoes should increase significantly by Mid April.

Florida Orange Shipments

The USDA 2015-16 Florida orange shipping estimate has increased 3 percent to 71 million, though it is still well below the 96.8 million boxes of oranges moved during the 2014-15 season.  A 2 million box rise in Valencias to 35 million accounted for the increase, while early and mid-season varieties stayed at 36 million boxes.  Florida citrus officials say its citrus crops remain in a “crisis” situation due to disease issues.

The USDA’s estimate of the 2015-16 Florida grapefruit crop also rose slightly to 10.7 million boxes from 10.5 million. Specialty citrus decreased a fraction to 1.8 million boxes.