Archive For The “Trucking Reports” Category

Stemilt Peach and Nectarine Shipments are Well Underway

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Stemilt Growers of Wenatchee, WA was in the third week of harvest of Artisan Organics peaches and nectarines in early August and will be shipping well into September.

“It’s been a strong start to our all-organic peach and nectarine season thanks to ideal temperatures in southeastern Washington state,” Brianna Shales, Stemilt communications manager, said in a news release.

Peak loading season for Artisan Organics peaches and nectarines is until mid-September, according to the release.

Stemilt has a new pop-up bin display for retailers featuring Stemilt fruit with the Artisan Organics logo, according to the release.

“Display bins are an effective merchandising tool, but especially helpful with organic fruit,” Shales said. “Retailers can build larger displays of organic peaches and nectarines with these bins in order to drive impulse sales.”

Stemilt differentiates themselves with organic peaches and nectarines through their ten-year partnership with the Douglas family.

“The move to organics was a move to produce fruits with complex flavors,” Shales said. “Flavor is what consumers crave, and we’re confident that we’ll keep delivering on that promise with our Artisan Organics peaches until season’s end.”   

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Wisconsin Potato Shipments Expected to be Good This Season

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While we haven’t seen any estimate for Wisconsin potato shipments, reading between the lines it appears a fairly normal season is expected.

While some diggings got underway the last week of July, the main crop, which is russets, is just now starting.

The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association reports a decent crop with adequate rain.

Alsum Farms & Produce Inc. of Friesland reports Wisconsin has been shipping reds and gold potatoes since the first week of August.

Alsum is just starting to dig its new crop russets this week and will immediately start shipping its new-crop of fingerlings.

Alsum apparently avoided heavy rains in late July, despite other regions of the state being heavily impacted by strong storms.

Bushmans’ Inc. of Rosholt reports spring rains delayed planting schedules, but the crop has been rapidly catching up during the summer. However, the company notes it was catching up due to favorable weather and is cranking up its packing shed this week with russets. It has been shipping reds and round whites since late July.

Okray Family Farms of Plover reports too much rain put the harvest behind about 10 days for the normal starting date of August 1st.

A similar report comes from RPE Inc. of Bancroft, WI although it is reporting a great looking crop, although its about 7 to 10 days late.

Farmers Potato Exchange Inc. of Antigo reports a similar situation.

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Duda is Importing Citrus to the U.S. for the 17th Season

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OVIEDO, FL– After concluding a successful domestic citrus season in the United States, Duda Farm Fresh Foods launched its imported citrus program for the 17th consecutive summer.

Beginning mid-May through October, Duda imports citrus to the U.S. from the southern hemisphere.

During the 2019 season, Duda introduced Argentinian lemons. Available in stores now, Chilean easy-peeler clementines display vibrant colors and a premium sugar-to-acid ratio, which results in a sweeter flavor perfect for late summer snacking. Duda’s line of imported citrus, sold under the Dandy® label, includes clementines, lemons, navels and Cara Cara oranges.

“Preserving our relationships with growers in the southern hemisphere for over 17 years now is a great accomplishment and one we are very proud of,” said Alberto Cuellar, vice president of global business at Duda Farm Fresh Foods. “As consumer demand for citrus in the summer increases, we will continue to meet that need through our citrus import program.”

Once the domestic market is out of the citrus growing season, Duda ensures their customers receive fresh-tasting fruit year-round by maintaining its long-lasting relationships with growers in the southern hemisphere. The brand primarily has sourced fruit from Chile, Peru and Uruguay, and looks to continue bringing high-quality products with new additions from Morocco and Argentina.  

“At Duda Farm Fresh Foods, we are constantly improving our citrus variety to provide quality fruit for our customers year-round,” said Dan Duda, president of Duda Farm Fresh Foods. “Importing citrus from our growers in the southern hemisphere allows us to provide a solution to seasonal gaps in the U.S. market.”

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Minnesota’s First Kiss Apple Shipments Return in Limited Volume

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Introduced in 2018 First Kiss is an apple variety being shipped in greater, but still very limited supply.

For the first time, First Kiss will ship to select retailers nationwide, according to a news release. The variety was introduced by Honeybear Brands of Elgin, MN. It is grown exclusively in Minnesota.

“Our orchards are maturing each season and producing more and more of this amazing new fruit, so we’re able to ship — still in very limited supply — to a few retail partners outside of Minnesota who really want to try something that will wow their apple-loving customers,” Don Roper, Honeybear Brands vice president of sales and marketing, said.

First Kiss is a descendent of Minnesota’s Honeycrisp. The result is a tart and juicy apple with a firm, crisp bite and a deep, scarlet skin.

“It’s an early season apple … so it really now marks the opening of the premium apple season,” Kristi Harris, Honeybear Brands brand manager, said.

In Minnesota, Lund’s and Cub stores will sell First Kiss apples. 


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U.S. Cherry Shipments from the Northwest Coming to a Close Soon

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Cherry shipments from the Northwestern United States have been remarkable this season, but will seasonally come to a close this month.

Loadings are expected to end up around the 22 million, 20 pound equivalent boxes this season, not that much below the 25.4 million boxes a year ago. Although last season was a good quality crop, this year it is marked not only by beauty and taste, but exceptionally large sized fruit.

While there has been a lot of concern over Trump Administration tariff issues with China, exports represented 33 percent of the volume this season. The cherry industry was at best only hoping for 30 percent. A nice surprise.

Stemilt Growers of Wenatchee, WA reports overall, fruit quality is really really high and with great sizing.

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Northwest Potato Shipments Look Favorable for September Start

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It is still a month away, but Northwest potato shipments are expected to be good this season, following last year when the growing season was plagued by adverse weather.

Earlier this year when weather delayed plantings nearly a month, Mother Nature changed her tune and now the season looks to be pretty much on schedule starting during the first half of September.

Although Washington state acreage is up this season, it is due mostly for processing potatoes.

Skagit Valley’s Best Produce of Mount Vernon, WA completed its 20th shipping season in early May. It now has all of its red, yellow, white and purple potatoes in the ground, and the crop is progressing nicely.

Norm Nelson Inc. of Mount Vernon finished its plantings in early June and should start potato shipments in mid September with a bumper crop.

Bouchey Potato of Harrah, WA started harvesting conventional potatoes in July, plus will be shipping organic reds, yellows, russets and fingerlings this season.

Oregon Potato Shipments

Oregon’s upcoming season appears to be following a similar pattern.

Botsford & Goodfellow Inc. of Clackamas, Ore. reports a similar weather pattern experienced by the Washington potato industry, with crops progressing in a similar manner. The company, which is a shipper and broker of potatoes, is just starting its new season.

Riverside Potato of Klamath falls, Ore. reports it is about two to three weeks late this year, overall. It ships reds, yellows and russets. 

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U.S. Apple Loadings are Expected to Increase from Last Season

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U.S. apple shipments are expected to total over 267 million 42-pound carton equivalents, a 9 percent increase from the 244 million boxes loaded during the previous season.

Washington Apple Shipments

Washington had a smaller crop during the 2018 season than in 2017 – an estimated 117 million 40-pound boxes compared to 133 million boxes. This season increased shipments are expected.

Red delicious, gala, golden delicious, granny smith, Pink Lady, Honeycrisp and fuji are the top apple varieties, with the Cosmic Crisp being shipped in December for the first time.

Michigan Apple Shipments

Michigan apple shipments will get underway on normal schedule around mid- to late August, depending on variety. A good crop is seen. Last year’s volume was 25 million 42-pound box equivalents. The average crop size is about 25.2 million boxes.

Michigan grows many varieties, including consumer favorites like Honeycrisp, gala and fuji. The state also produces a number of popular club varieties, Smith said.

New York Apple Shipments

New York apple shipments for the season are estimated to be around 31 million bushels. Early variety loadings get underway in mid- to late August.

New York will be shipping SweeTango and favorites like Honeycrisp, gala, red delicious, mcintosh, empire, cortland and more. 

California Apple Shipments

California apple shipments dipped last year because of bad weather, but should reach 1.5 million to 2 million 40-pound box equivalents, compared to 1.1 million boxes for the previous year.

Although the state had a rainy winter and spring, the apple loadings have just got underway with galas, as usual, followed by granny smith in August, fuji in September, Pink Lady in October and braeburn and other varieties after that.

California growers do not ship out of storage.

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Fruit World Co. to Start Shipping Thomcord Grapes in Early August

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By Fruit World Co.

Reedley, CA  – Fruit World Co. anticipates an increased shipments of their organic Thomcord grapes for the upcoming 2019 season. A hybrid of the heirloom “grape jelly” Concord Grape and popular Thompson Seedless grape, Thomcords are known for being exceptionally flavorful and aromatic.

Fruit World expects to begin shipping their 2019 crop of Thomcord grapes in 20 x 1 lb clamshells and 10 x 2 lb brown paper totes the first week in August, and will continue packing and shipping from their Reedley vineyard through early October.

Once again in 2019, each pack of Fruit World Organic Thomcord Grapes will engage consumers by sharing the Fruit World story and inviting consumers to send a text message to the grower.

In 2018, CJ Buxman, co-founder of Fruit World, the largest California grower of organic Thomcord grapes, had a fun idea: “I love the flavor and aroma of our Thomcord grapes, and I wanted to really connect with the consumers’ eating experience,” he explained. “So, we placed cards in over 160,000 one-pound clamshells inviting consumers to connect via text message.” After receiving over 1,800 text messages—and responding to every one of them—there was no doubt that consumers also love Thomcords.

These premium Thomcord organic grapes will once again be in high demand. “The Thomcord yield per acre is less than other varieties of table grapes, but its taste and aroma can’t be beat,” Buxman added. “They also are a perfect example of our obsession with growing the most flavorful fruit possible.”

And once again, Fruit World will be adding their ‘text-me’ cards to each package. “It’s a lot of work responding, but the messages are heart-warming, and our retailers tell us it really drove repeat sales,” said Fruit World co-founder Bianca Kaprielian. “We were blown away by the response last year. We expected people to love the flavor, but were surprised and humbled by the large number of people that took the time to thank us for growing them.”

In addition to Thomcords, in 2019 Fruit World will be shipping an additional ten organic grape varieties grown on the heritage vines of Pete Wolf, one of Fruit World’s grower partners. Pete Wolf was one of the first organic growers in California, and Fruit World proudly sells his fruit, some of the most flavorful, crunchiest grapes around. Fruit World is accepting orders now for these high demand, limited supply grape varieties. Call (559) 650-0334 for more information or visit to learn more about the Fruit World story.

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Good Volume Seen for Domestic Berries; Huge Hike Predicted for Peruvian Blueberries

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My beautiful picture

Good volume berry shipments are expected from U.S. shippers the rest of the summer and a huge volume increase is in the forecast for imported Peruvian blueberries.

In early July, California strawberry shippers had moved over 105 million trays, compared to 121.4 million trays at the same time a year ago. Rain during the winter and spring followed by a heatwave the second week of June had California strawberry loadings running below last year’s numbers.

Besides strawberries there are other competing fruit shipments ranging from cherries, to stone fruit and melons.

Blueberry Shipments

Gourmet Tranding Co. of Los Angeles reports domestic blueberry shipments should remain strong for at least the next couple of months, continuing through September. However, domestic “blues” are expected to have some strong competition from Peruvian blueberry imports, which is seen increasing as much as 50 percent over a year ago. Those imports begin in August and continue through January and possibly into February.

The vast majority of domestic blueberry shipments during the summer are originating out of Michigan, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia. All of these areas are reporting good crops.

Other Berry Shipments

Summertime means peak shipments for domestic raspberries and blackberries. A hot spell in California during June did not have as severe an impact on raspberries as it did on strawberries.

California raspberry shipments should continue into mid-November out of Watsonville. Razz loadings will then transition to Ventura County, before switching to Mexico for the winter.

California Giant Berry Farms of Watsonville will be shipping California raspberries until late September or early October before shifting to Mexico.

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New York Produce Shipments Should Pick Up after Slow Start

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New York state produce shipments rank in the top 10 states and while summer loadings have been going on, the heaviest movement still lies ahead.

The USDA reports New York biggest fresh commodities by volume reveal apples, cabbage, cucumbers and fresh snap beans increased last year, while onions, sweet corn and potatoes dropped compared to the 2017 report:

New York shipped 823 truck load equivalents of apples and exported 150 truck loads in 2018, up from 7,35 truck loads and 140 truck loads respectively, in 2017.

Dry onions were at 440 truck loads in 2018, down from 404 truck loads in 2017.

Cabbage was at 437 truck loads in 2018, up from 405 truck loads in 2017.

Sweet corn shipments reached 108 truck loads in 2018, down from 118 truck loads in 2017.

Cucumbers were at 713 truck loads in 2018, up from 660 truck loads in 2017.

Potato shipments 673 truck loads in 2018, down from 825 truck loads in 2017.

Fresh snap bean shipments were at 50 truck loads in 2018, up from 37 truck loads in 2017.

Minkus Family Farms in New Hampton will start shipping yellow and red onions from it 1,500 acres of onions and cover crops in Orange County in August. The company expects to ship about 200 truck loads of onions this season.

New York’s sweet corn loadings may be down a little this year due to adverse weather during the planting season. The sweet corn season typically runs from July 20 to Oct. 10, but this year, the harvest is expected to be 2 to 3 weeks late.

Cabbage planting started about 2½ to 3 weeks late as well, and pumpkins and other squash got in the ground, but their growth is stunted due to cool weather, so they may not be ready until October.

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