Here’s a news roundup ranging from Texas onion loadings to increasing shipments by an Ontario company, as well as a Colorado produce shipper, and finally, an update on blueberry imports.
Texas Onion Shipments
South Texas onion shipments get underway within the next couple of weeks, but due to industry consolidation and decreasing numbers of onion growers and shippers over the past 15 years, there has been a 31 percent decrease in the number of onion producers and a 34 percent decrease in the number of handlers.
The Rio Grande Valley of South Texas has about 60 onion growers and about 30 shippers. Total shipments of south Texas onions were about 3 million 50-pound equivalents for the 2015-16 season,
Texas onions, Mexican imported produce – grossing about $3400 to Chicago.
Red Sun Shipments
Red Sun Farms of Lemington, ON is expanding its shipments of tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers to include Golden Sun Avocados.
Best known as a North American greenhouse grower, Red Sun Farms will be handling avocados produced in Mexico, and distributed through the company’s supply chain to service customers throughout North America.
Red Sun Farms will begin distributing the Mexican avocados during the second quarter of 2018.
Sakata Sweet Corn
Sakata Farms of Brighton, CO is changing its farming operation and discontinuing sweet corn production, and concentrating on onions and other crops.
The company is holding a farm equipment auction March 10 at 9:30 a.m. Mountain time. The company will no longer raise sweet corn, broccoli and cabbage.
Fresh blueberry shipments take place in the U.S. the year around, made possible in large part by the increasing amount of imports from South America, which supplies product during the offseason of U.S. blueberry shippers. Chile is the leading country supplying “blues” this time of the year to the U.S., accounting for 52.7 percent of fresh cultivated blueberries over the past five years.
Since 2013, however, Mexico, Argentina and Peru significantly increased exports to the U.S. Argentina has upped exports to the U.S. by 35 percent from 2013 to 2017, Uruguay is up 46 percent and Mexico is up 414 percent.
Percentage wise, the biggest increase has come from Peru, with U.S. imports from that country up 3,971 percent from 2013 to 2017.
Overall, blueberry imports are up 44 percent.