Loadings from Ontario Greenhouses are Picking Up

Loadings from Ontario Greenhouses are Picking Up

Ontario’s greenhouse vegetable shipments will start building in mid-February and continue to increase through the spring.

DelFrescoPure of Kingsville, Ontario reports the company began picking mini cucumbers and strawberries in late January. 

The greenhouse industry has been increasing the amount of high-pressure sodium lights being installed in facilities, which lengthens the harvest season.

If you want to grow tomatoes during the winter, as well as peppers, strawberries, or just about anything else, high-pressure sodium lights are a necessity.

Pure Hothouse Foods of Leamington, Ontario reports Canadian production of seedless cucumbers (both long English and mini cucumbers) get underway in mid-February and continue with increasing volume well into the spring.

Central Mexican greenhouse operations experienced cloudier than usual weather and lighter volume in late November and December compared to last year.

Tomatoes, bell peppers and baby eggplants will start in Canada in mid-March to early April and continue to ramp up volume heading into the spring.

Winter greenhouse production was held down by lengthy cloud cover and persistent low light levels in Mexican growing regions, said Harold Paivarinta, senior director sales and business development for Red Sun Farms, Kingsville, Ontario. 

Red Sun Farms of Kingsville, Ontario report following a very challenging winter they were anxiously awaiting the maturing of additional crops in Virginia and Ontario this spring.

NatureFresh Farms of Leamington, Ontario notes since mid-January, production has been ramping up again, especially in peppers and tomatoes and good supplies are seen in the coming months.

In February, the company sees Mexico returning to normal production, and shortly after, Canada will start picking more cucumbers..

Ontario accounts for nearly 80 percent of total Canadian greenhouse production and the region has seen steady growth in greenhouse vegetable acreage, averaging close to 7 percent per year for multiple years. However, little change in acreage is expected from last year. 

Ironically, the growth pattern reduction is a result in part due to the diversion of acreage to cannabis. No report is yet available on total amount of acreage devoted to cannabis production in Ontario.

Overall greenhouse vegetable acreage in Ontario is close to 3,100 this year, which is flat or up very slightly from about 3,000 acres a year ago.

While lacking organic statistics, it is estimated organic acreage may represent about 10 to 11 percent or more of greenhouse vegetable acreage.