Archive For The “Trucking Reports” Category

Late Harvest has Georgia Produce Shipments Playing Catch Up

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A38Harvest start dates were later than last year, but Georgia produce shipments gathered steam in May and June should be even better.

March and April cool weather resulted in fewer shipments than year, when Georgia growing regions experienced a warm spring.  The top two months for Georgia produce shipments in 2106 were June, with 48 percent of the state’s total yearly volume, and July, with 19 percent.

Ken Corbett Farms LLC of Lake Park, GA had 2018 harvest dates running 10-14 days behind normal.  J&S Produce of Mount Vernon, GA has had a similar experience with squash and zucchini.

Through April 2017 Georgia had shipped 4.1 million pounds shipped of squash.  By the end of April this year zero pounds of squash had been shipped.  Georgia squash shipments last year totaled 49.7 million pounds.

Through April 28, Georgia blueberry shipments totaled 2.8 million pounds, down from 66 million pounds at the same time last year.  For the week of April 23-28, Georgia accounted for 20 percent of total U.S. blueberry volume, down from 34 percent at the same time last year.

Total Georgia blueberry shipments last year totaled 22.5 million pounds.

Georgia cabbage shipments of the week of April 23-28 totaled 2.2 million pounds, down from 6.3 million pounds the same time last year. Georgia accounted for 15 percent of total cabbage supply for the week, down from 36 percent of total supply a year ago.

Season-to-date shipments of Georgia cabbage through April 22 totaled 2.4 million pounds, off from 11.1 million pounds at the same time a year ago. Total Georgia cabbage shipments last year totaled 61.5 million pounds.

For the week of April 23-28, Georgia onion shipments totaled 16.8 million pounds, down from 19.7 million pounds the same week a year ago.

Georgia onions accounted for 16 percent of total U.S. onion volume, compared 17 percent at the same time a year ago.

Season-to-date shipments of Georgia onions through April 28 were 25 million pounds, down from 57.1 million pounds at the same time last year.

Georgia onion shipments last year totaled 283.6 million pounds.

There were exception with Georgia produce where loadings were actually ahead of  year ago.

Georgia is a significant producer of greens. For the week of April 23-28, Georgia shipped 3.3 million pounds of greens, up from 2.7 million pounds the same week last year.

The state’s shippers accounted for 65 percent of U.S. greens volume, compared with 43 percent of total U.S. shipments at the same time. Total greens shipments from Georgia topped 80 million pounds in 2017.

Georgia broccoli shipments  through April 28 reflect bigger volume in 2018 so far compared with 2017. For the week of April 23-28, Georgia accounted for 2.3 million pounds, up from no reported shipments the same week a year ago.

Georgia accounted for 8 percent of total U.S. broccoli supply the week of April 23-28.

Season-to-date shipments of Georgia broccoli through April 28 totaled 14.7 million pounds, up from just 3.3 million pounds the same time a year ago. Total broccoli shipments all of last year totaled 4 million pounds.

Georgia carrot shipments the week of April 23-28 totaled 1.9 million pounds, up from 1.6 million pounds the same week a year ago.

Georgia represented just 7 percent of total U.S. carrot supply for the week, slightly up from 6 percent the same week a year ago. Total Georgia carrot shipments in 2017 totaled 19.4 million pounds.



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Berry Shipments from Major U.S. Shipping Areas Expected to be Good this Year

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Loadings of fresh summer berries are expected  across the nation from the major shipping areas.

Shipments of blueberries, raspberries and blackberries across pr0duction areas of the U.S. have been less as cool weather prevailed during much of the growing season, although is changing.  Excellent volume should be coming.

Salinas Valley strawberries from the Watsonville area accounted for over 1,000 truck loads last week and the peak of the season hasn’t even arrived yet.

Although California Giant Berry Farms of Watsonville, CA is now shipping Georgia blueberries.  Next month it will be moving to California for product.  California shipments will then eventually will shift to the Pacific Northwest.

Oregon Berry Packing Co. of Hillsboro, Ore. will begin blueberry shipment in mid- to late June or early July, depending on weather.  The normal start date is in late June.

New Jersey blueberry shipments are expected to be good, although no record numbers are seen, which should around 38 million pounds of fresh berries and up to 8 million pounds for the freezer market.  Harvest should start June 15 or 16, and continue until August 15.

MBG Marketing of Grand Junction, MI expects to start Michigan blueberry shipments in mid-June, a week to 10 days later than usual.  Peak volume should be occurring for the Fourth of July and Labor Day.

Wish Farms of Plant City, FL finished its Florida Blueberry shipments in mid May and now has good volume coming out of Georgia.

California Giant has just transitioned its blackberry and raspberry programs from Mexico to Watsonville, where shipments will continue all summer.

Giumarra Cos. of Los Angeles now has good volume with Georgia blackberries and blueberries, which will continue through June.

California strawberries are grossing about $6000 to Chicago.

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Shipping Updates for Arizona Melons, Vidalia Onions, New Zealand Lemonade Apples

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DSCN0641Here’s some loading opportunities ranging from melons in Arizona, to Georgia onions and imported Lemonade apples from New Zealand.

Cantaloupe and honeydew shipments are underway from Maricopa, AZ.  Santa Rosa Produce is expecting to ship a normal volume of over 4 million boxes of melons from its 5000-acre farming operation.

Vidalia Onion Shipments

Vidalia onion growers started harvest April 20 this year compared to April 12 last year.

Vidalia on shipments have been underway for over a month now and a fairly normal crop of about 5 million cartons is still expected to shipped.  USDA figures show Georgia onion shipments the week of April 29 to May 5 totaled 390,000 40-pound cartons, down 22 percent from 497,500 cartons the same week a year ago.  Season-to-date shipments of Georgia onions through May 5 totaled 1.01 million 40-pound cartons, down 48 percent from 1.925 million cartons shipped at the same time a year ago.  The season got underway about a week later than in 2017, which accounts for much of the smaller volume to date.  Last year Vidalia shipped about 5.7 million 40-pound units of sweet onions.

Vidalia growers have storage capacity of about 3 million cartons with shipment expected to continue through the summer.

New Zealand Lemonade Apples

 by Giumarra Companies

LOS ANGELES – The Giumarra Companies is entering its third season as the exclusive North American supplier of Lemonade™ variety apples with increased volumes.

“We know from market research that apples are still one of consumers’ most-purchased items in the produce department. Consumers are seeking new, exciting flavors and Lemonade is a unique variety that fits the bill,” says Jason Bushong, Division Manager of Giumarra Wenatchee. “It’s a striking yellow apple and the flavor is refreshing and tangy-sweet with a hint of effervescence.”

Lemonade is currently grown solely in New Zealand, with plans to expand to North American growing regions. Bushong cites the apple’s fresh crop attributes as a differentiating factor.

First shipments of Lemonade will arrive at the end of May to both East and West Coast ports. The season will conclude in August.

About the Giumarra Companies

The Giumarra Companies is a leading international network of fresh produce growers, distributors, and marketers under the Nature’s Partner brand.


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2018 Northwest Cherry Shipments are Set for Early June

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DSCN0627by Northwest Cherry Growers

Northwest cherry shipments are on pace for a strong start in June.

About 22.6 million (20-pound equivalent) boxes are forecast to be shipped this season.  The 2018 crop on the trees gives every indication of a fantastic season to come for growers, truckers and retailers alike.

In 2015 and 2016, we shipped for at least a week in the month of May.  Last season (2017) we didn’t begin shipping until the eighth of June.  Based on individual grower records of bloom timing in the Tri-Cities district, one of our earliest producing areas, they expect some early fruit during the first week of June with Chelan volume ramping up during the second week.  There is weather and time yet to happen between now and the start of harvest, but if all of these patterns continue we will still expect to see significant volumes in June, especially the June 27th break prior to the Fourth of July holiday.

Every tree is different, but there are several trends noted across varieties and growing areas.  In general, bloom this season was well spread throughout the trees.  “Snowball” bloom, or heavy clusters of flowers, were less prevalent.  The flower count per bud has also been closer to normal, 2-to-3 flowers, as compared to last year’s 4-to-6 flowers.  Fewer flowers per bud typically translates into more energy distributed into fewer cherries per tree.

After bloom finishes, the next stage of the estimate waiting game begins….from Rainiers in the Orondo area to Chelans in Pasco.  However, it takes several weeks after bloom finishes before growers can determine what will “stick” on the trees…in other words, which flowers were pollinated and will turn into cherries.  Most commercial varieties will drop what they’re going to by the pit hardening stage, typically two to three weeks after bloom, but some cherries like the Chelan can “drop” all the way up to harvest.

Washington is shipping nearly 3200 truck load equivalents of apples weekly – grossing about $7000 to New York City.


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Imported Mexican Guava Shipments Have been Showing Growth

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IA27mported Mexican guava volume has been trending higher for Spring Valley Fruits LLC of Pharr, Tx, the largest U.S. importer of the tropical fruit.  The company imports about 60 to 65 percent of all the Mexican fresh guava coming to the U.S., said Alberto Diaz Lopez, principal with the company.

The company’s sales have grown 70 percent over the past two years.  Imports of Mexican guava is grown the round, typically being harvested green and breaking to a yellow color. Spring Valley not only has its own orchards and packing shed in Aguascalientes, but also markets guava for other growers in Michoacán, Zacatecas, and the state of Mexico.

Fresh guava imports from Mexico were approved in 2008.

The company has been growing guavas for 50 years, and before fresh guavas were authorized for entry into the U.S., the company exported frozen and dehydrated guavas.

USDA statistics show Mexico’s shipments of fresh guava totaling over 8,926 metric tons in 2017, up 18 percent from 2016 and 52 percent higher than 2015.  Mexico accounted for 93 percent of U.S. fresh guava imports in 2017, with light volume coming from Thailand and India.

Shipped in 16-pound cartons, U.S. imports of Mexican fresh guava totaled about 1.22 million cartons in 2017.

Many varieties of guava are grown in countries all over the world, and the Mexican guava has different characteristics than varieties grown in Asia.

Spring Valley Fruits first entered the U.S. market selling only bulk in 13-pound cartons, but since then clamshells have become more popular and now account for about 40 percent of business.

Sold at near $1.20 per pound at shipping point, the company also ships guava in 16 1-pound cartons, with a major customer being Wal-Mart.

Guava is high in nutrition and the potential for growth is seen to be very good.  It could very well become more popular perhaps following the track of other tropical fruit commodities that were once obscure but are now familiar to many.

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Michigan Asparagus Shipments Look Promising Despite Late Start

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DSCN0640by Michigan Asparagus Advisory Board

Dewitt, MI — Although limited in acreage, growers in the Southern region of Michigan asparagus shipments started the week of May 7th. However, most of the state’s growers located West Central Michigan, in the heart of the asparagus growing area, didn’t get underway until the week of May 14th.  Shipments will continue until early July.

This year, due to unseasonably cool spring temperatures and late season snowfall, growers across the state are experiencing one of the latest asparagus season starts in memory.

John Bakker, Executive Director of the Michigan Asparagus Advisory Board reassures, “We may have a delayed start but most grower shippers are on schedule to harvest and deliver similar volume to last season.” Bakker commented, “The biggest difference will be that the build up of volume will not happen slowly, over a couple weeks, but come on quickly between the week of May 14th until it reaches promotable volumes beginning the week of May 21st and continuing throughout the season.”

With quality and volume expected to be high this year, the 120 family farmers that produce the majority of Michigan’s asparagus are anticipating a great season.

Leveraging online influencers to reach consumers where they are has had proven success, and the Michigan Asparagus Advisory Board is promoting online engagement by offering giveaways during the season. Consumers can enter to win weekly nationwide flash giveaways for $50, blogger event giveaways for $100, or the board’s season-long giveaway of over $2000 in cash prizes including a $1000 grand prize. Each giveaway encourages consumers to connect and engage with the board’s ever-growing online community through social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram.

 About the Michigan Asparagus Advisory Board

The Michigan Asparagus Advisory Board (MAAB) promotes the production and consumption of Michigan Asparagus nationwide. The organization is dedicated to sharing the virtues of asparagus, while also assisting with agricultural research and the development of asparagus farming. The MAAB is funded by Michigan Asparagus growers.

Michigan is shipping in light volume potatoes, as well as apples – grossing about $1100 to Chicago.

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Potandon is Now Shipping Arizona Red and Yellow Potatoes

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DSCN0616by Potandon Produce L.L.C.

Idaho Falls, ID  – Potandon Produce L.L.C., the exclusive marketing agent for Pinto Creek Co., LLC in Eloy, Arizona, began potato shipments May 10th.

Early season growing conditions did delay this year’s crop, but did not impact quality.  Red potatoes became available for shipping on the 10th, with yellows available May 14th.  Potandon will also distribute Arizona potatoes from their Idaho Falls, Idaho cross-dock facility starting approximately May 18th.

Dick Thomas, Senior VP of Sales reported that overall acreage has remained fairly consistent with the last two years, with a slight increase in mini potato acres to meet additional demand.

Pinto Creek is a PRIMUS certified facility with a full-time Quality Assurance person on-site daily.  The packing facility has seen steady improvement over the past decade with the addition of a new storage facility and modernized grading and sizing equipment.  The Pinto Creek team commitment to excellence has elevated their status to one of the premier red and yellow potato packing sheds in the nation.

About Potandon Produce L.L.C.

Headquartered in Idaho Falls, Idaho, Potandon Produce is the largest marketer of fresh potatoes and one of the largest marketers of fresh onions in North America.  Potandon holds the exclusive licensing rights to the Green Giant™ brand for fresh potatoes and onions in North America, and is able to provide year-round supply to any size retail, foodservice, or wholesale customer.  Potandon is also an industry leader in food safety and in bringing innovative products to the market. Visit to learn more about Potandon, and go to Potandon’s consumer website,, to learn more about the company’s distinctive potato varieties. To learn more about the Green Giant™ Fresh program visit

Green Giant, the Green Giant character, Sprout, and associated words and designs are trademarks of B&G Foods North America, Inc.-used under license. ©2016 B&G Foods North America, Inc.


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KORU Apples Arriving at U.S. Ports for Distribution

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A26by New York Apple Sales

With New Zealand KORU® Apple harvest in full swing, KORU® Apple shipments began arriving at USA ports in mid April 13 and are now being distributed mostly by truck to markets across the nation.

The first commercial exports were shipped to the USA in 2013, making this the sixth year for KORU® Apples in the USA market.

Export volumes have been increasing annually, along with production, with this year’s New Zealand crop estimated to reach 180,000 Z-pack equivalents, or about 7.2 million pounds of KORU® Apples.

Andy McGrath, Variety Manager, says, “Being a new apple variety, many of the orchards have not yet reached maturity, so you can expect the volume of KORU® Apples to increase significantly over the next several years as these orchards come into full production. Also, USA plantings will produce good volumes from 2020, making KORU® an all-year-round apple.”

It’s a natural cross between Braeburn and Fuji, and is incredibly crisp, sweet and naturally delicious.

KORU® Apples have a unique orange/red coloring over a yellow background.

With a two-hemisphere production, KORU® growers provide you with the freshest apple possible. Coast to Coast Growers Coop in the USA joined the KORU® team in 2013 with growing regions in Washington State and New York State. New Zealand grown KORU® Apples are picked in March and sold in USA markets from May to September, followed by USA grown KORU® Apples picked in October and sold in USA markets from October to April. Andy McGrath assures consumers that, “Although KORU® Apples store extremely well, the two-hemisphere production means you won’t find a KORU® Apple in the markets over six months from its picking date.”

KORU® apples from New Zealand are sold exclusively in the US by three premier sales organizations. Chelan Fresh-Chelan, WA, Oneonta Star Ranch-Wenatchee, WA, and New York Apple Sales-Glenmont, NY.

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Shipping Outlook for Kern County Produce, Almonds and Texas Potatoes

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DSCN0612California’s Kern County citrus shipments are wrapping up, while new crops of vegetables will be starting soon.  Meanwhile, California almonds look promising for the upcoming season. Finally, Black Gold Farms once again is shipping Texas potatoes.

For example, Grimmway Farms of Bakers will kick off its new carrot season with loadings of both conventional and organic carrots starting this week.  The firms bi-color corn got underway a week or so ago, plus it’s organic potatoes started shipping in late April.

Kern Ridge Growers of Arvin now has carrot shipments, with bell peppers set to start by early June.  Dan Andrews Farms of Bakersfield will get underway with watermelons in June, as well as cantaloupe and honeydew in July.

Sun World International is currently shipping grapes out of the Coachella Valley to be followed by Arvin grapes in early July.

Kern County carrots and vegetables – grossing about $6100 to Atlanta.

California Almond Shipments

California’s 2017 almond acreage is estimated at 1.33 million acres, up 7  percent from the 2016 acreage, which had  1.24 million acres.  The almond harvest typically begins in August.

Of the total acreage, 1 million acres were bearing and 330,000 acres were non-bearing, with preliminary bearing acreage for 2018 estimated at 1.07 million acres.  California has nearly 6,000  almond growers.  Five California counties have 73 percent of the total bearing acreage: Kern, Fresno, Stanislaus, Merced and Madera.

The leading almond variety continues to be nonpareil, followed by monterey, butte, carmel and padre.

Texas Potato Shipments

Black Gold Farms, based in Grand Forks, ND is now shipping red potatoes from its operation in Pearsall, Tx.  The growing and shipping operation, located Southwest of San Antonio, has been growing red potatoes in Pearsall since 2011, though its potato growing operation there started in 1992 with chipping potatoes,

Black Gold Farms is shipping from its Pearsall facility as well as from its Arbyrd, Mo., facility, with the Texas crop expected to ship through early June, when the Missouri crop will be ready.

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California is Experiencing Strong Strawberry Shipments; South African Citrus to Arrive Soon

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DSCN0607The past few weeks have seen California strawberry shipments ramping up for Mother’s Day and good volume will continue beyond…Meanwhile the first shipment of South African citrus will be arriving in the U.S. within a couple of weeks.

For example, California Giant Berry Farms and Well-Pict Inc., both based in Watsonville, have seen volume recently doubling on a weekly basis.

While most of the California strawberry shipment for Mother’s Day is coming out of the Santa Maria district, Salinas volume also is building.

The California Strawberry Commission reports the Salinas/Watsonville district has 13,233 acres of strawberries this season, which will account for 39 percent of the state’s strawberry acreage.

Last year, the district had 13,570 acres and accounted for 37 percent of the state’s strawberry acreage.  The area shipped more than 102 million trays of strawberries in 2017, up from 100,820,365 trays in 2016.

Most shippers are expecting volume in 2018 to be similar to last year’s.

Rain in mid-March really had an adverse affect on strawberry shipments for Easter this year.  In addition to Santa Maria, Salinas and Watsonville, strawberry shipments also have been coming out of Ventura County.

Summer Citrus From South Africa’s Planning Session Leads To Positive 2018 Season

by Summer Citrus from South Africa (SCSA)

CITRUSDAL, South Africa – Easy Peelers, followed by Navels and Star Rubies from South Africa, will start to arrive in containers in the United States towards the end of May, with the first conventional vessel arriving the third week of June at the port of Philadelphia. To support a successful 2018 season, members from across the U.S. and Western & Northern Cape came together in March for the Annual Planning Meeting, hosted by SCSA, to review sales and marketing plans, production volumes, shipping schedules, and category trends.

It is expected be a good season despite the challenges associated with the droughts occurring in the Western Cape.  With international best practices, innovation and the latest technology, growers are able to maximize their resources in these difficult times to produce an increased volume of good looking crop.



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