Archive For The “Trucking Reports” Category
A new variety that was developed in the Midwest and grown in Michigan is now being shipped.
The EverCrisp is a late-season apple and a cross between Honeycrisp and Fuji which stores well and is long-lasting, with the ability to last for weeks without refrigeration.
The Michigan Apple Committee of Lansing reports it is a rosy-colored, crisp apple that is a fairly new variety grown across the Midwest, including Michigan.
The committee notes many Michigan growers have invested in EverCrisp tree plantings that have now come into bearing. The variety can be found at many retailers and grocery chains across Michigan and throughout the United States. It is most widely available after the New Year when it comes out of storage.
The EverCrisp was originally developed in 1998 as part of the Midwest Apple Improvement Association (MAIA), an apple breeding project in which growers of all sizes were invited to participate in developing new varieties.
MAIA was co-founded by Mitch Lynd of Lynd Fruit Farms in Pataksala, Ohio, who hoped to develop flavorful apple varieties despite the region’s unpredictable winter and spring weather patterns.
The Evercrisp or MAIA-1 variety, as it’s also called, came from a cross made in spring 1998 when Lynd collected apple blossoms from a Fuji tree, removed the pollen, and used it to pollinate Honeycrisp tree flower.
A favorable winter fruit import season from Chilean took a turn for the worse January 31st because of heavy rains and hail.
Chile is reporting serious damage to a number of key fruit crops in their early harvest season following unseasonal heavy rainfall of up to 2.4 inches in production regions.
The Fruit exporters’ association Asoex of Santiago reports rainfall – and hail in some cases – that hit the central and southern regions over the weekend damaging summer fruit crops including blueberries, table grapes, and stone fruit. This will result in lower export volumes than expected for the 2020-21 season.
There are reports of splitting in blueberries from later areas, especially in the Brightwell and Ochlockonee varieties, while in the Last Call variety, the situation is under evaluation. However, the damage observed so far will affect the production and export volume this season.
The Chilean blueberry industry had last year forecasted a slight increase in fresh exports to around 111,000 metric tons (MT). The South American country has shipped only 15 percent of its shipments for the season.
Asoex report grapes are “very damaged,” not only due to splitting, but also because of grapevine trellises collapsing due to the weight of the water. The Thompson variety in Rancagua, is already showing evidence of “mal de media luna” (half-moon syndrome), associated with a fungus that rots the grain and damages any attempt to market the fruit.
Additionally there was hail, but the effects are still being evaluated.
Additionally, stone fruit, there are losses due to splitting and possible rotting. Loss estimates are currently impossible because of continuing rain in some areas, while others areas remain inaccessible.
From Arizona to Idaho and Washington state gross freight rates for fruits and vegetables are often 10 to 30 percent higher than they were at this time a year ago. At the same time many rates are moving little or downward right now on a week to week basis.
Due to COVID shipping disruptions, and competitive dry freight rates, more attractive hauls not requiring refrigeration are a reason many types of transportation rates are well above 2020 before the pandemic shutdowns and restrictions.
Here’s a glimpse at some possible loading opportunities in the western half of the United States.
The Yuma District continues shipping over 1400 truck loads of Iceberg, romaine and other lettuces each week as well as some broccoli and cauliflower. A lot of multi pick up loads are starting in California (Oxnard, Kern County, desert areas etc.) and the truck is filled in Yuma or Nogales.
Yuma vegetables to New York City – grossing about $8100, over 19 percent higher than this time last year.
Mexican veggies crossing through Nogales are generally in the heaviest volume now for winter shipments lead by items ranging from zucchini and other types of squash, as well as vine ripe, plum and grape tomatoes. There’s also loadings of bell peppers, cucumbers and a host of other mixed veggies at Nogales distribution warehouses.
Nogales vegetables to Dallas – grossing about $3000, 30 percent over a year ago.
Nearly 2800 truckload equivalents of apples are moving out of the Yakima and Wenatchee valleys each week, plus around 450 truckload equivalents of pears.
Washington apples and pears – grossing about $8500 to New York City, about 25 percent higher than a year ago.
Along the state line, Washington’s Columbia Basin and the nearby Umatillia Basin in Oregon are shipping over 900 truckloads of potatoes and about 300 loads of onions weekly.
There’s over 900 truck loads of onions being moved weekly from the Western Idaho/Malheur County, Oregon area.
The Twin Falls region in Idaho is shipping around 1850 truckload equivalents of potatoes each week.
Idaho potatoes grossing about $5800 to Atlanta, 28 percent more than a year ago.
Mexican produce crossings through South Texas continue to give Nogales a run for its money (loads). The 1250 loads each week of avocados leads the pack, although there is good volume with vine ripe and plum tomatoes, as well items ranging from cucumbers, bell peppers, broccoli, limes and a host of other veggies and tropical fruits.
Mexican produce crossings through the Lower Rio Grande Valley – grossing around $5800 to New York City.
As the 2020-21 Florida tropical avocado season winds down, Brooks Tropicals has been supplementing supplies of their original tropical avocado branded SlimCado™ with fresh fruit from the Dominican Republic.
“We had a pretty good year in terms of crop-size here in Florida”, says Peter Leifermann, VP of Sales and Marketing at Brooks, in a press release.
“Although we may not quite make our industry-wide goal of bushels, each variety produced a good crop and we were especially pleased with the late fall varieties.
We have a few more months of Florida fruit to harvest but it will be limited. Our partnerships in the Dominican Republic have allowed us to serve our customers for the entire calendar year.”
To continue to meet growing consumer demand for tropical avocado, Brooks Tropicals has partners in the Dominican Republic that grow and pack that country’s several varieties.
Almost 30 years ago, Brooks and Agroindustria Ocoena, S.A. (AIOSA) struck a relationship that began with an avocado packing line and continues today with the shared generations of agricultural knowledge between the firms.
Brooks Tropicals has been growing tropical avocado, fruits, and vegetables in the Caribbean and South Florida for nearly a hundred years and AIOSA began exporting in 1987. Brooks also has another decades-old partner in AMR-AGRO.
Similar to the Florida crop, the Dominican Republic has over 20 different varieties in production, but January begins the transition from a Lula and Semil dominant crop to the Carla variety.
Carla tropical avocado are characterized by their more round shape – as opposed to pear-like – and being a late season variety, it’s higher oil content.
“Tropical avocados are so near perfect, it’s like they take into consideration our diets!” Leifermann continues. “In the summer they are lighter in flavor, and as the cooler months come they have a richer flavor. The Carla – similar to our proprietary Florida winter varieties – is a delicious fruit that pleases even the most hardened hass-lovers.”
Brooks Tropicals will distribute Carla variety tropical avocado from January until the end of April.
Fewer exports of Peruvian mangoes are predicted this year as Brazil and Ecuador are wrapping up their seasons.
Exporters in Peru express optimism starting their season since Ecuador had season higher volumes towards the beginning, with lower volumes projected for its late season in January.
The current prediction of mango shipments from Peru to the U.S. for the season is 15.5 million boxes, 20% of what was exported to the U.S. a year ago. Mango volumes from Mexico will only start to pick up at the beginning of March.
During the last weeks of December, the total from Brazil, Ecuador and Peru was 25% lower than the same period of 2019. Estimated arrivals for January 2021 are substantially lower than those of last year at the same time.
Although demand during this time isn’t high, the low arrivals are already driving prices up to unusual numbers at a time when this normally wouldn’t happen (at least not in the last two seasons).
It is mid season for South African and Chilean stone fruit exports as both locations are seeing minor delays, but are overall pleased with how the season is moving along.
After three rough years, South Africa is having a normal crop.
Hortgro, the organization that represents South Africa’s stone fruit growers, reported updated numbers in volumes with increases across the board. Plums are estimated to be up by 27% for the season, returning to a normal crop season while peaches and nectarines are also expected to be up by eight and 10 percent, respectively.
Icon Fruit reports more optimism compared to this time last year. Apricot export volumes are exceeding initial export estimates and are currently up 90% compared to last season. If current trends continue there could be 12 million cartons of plums.
This volume increase is due to a winter with good rains and cooler spring temperatures during the flowering period. The sizes of the stone fruit are bigger, which also helps increase the number of cartons that are exported.
Chile exporters have had some frustrations due to a slow start of the season and are just beginning to see normal sizes and volumes catching up to predicted numbers.
Verfrut North American expects good exports throughout January and February.
The company reports older varieties of plums with small sizes will not be sent to the U.S. because Americans prefer new varieties and larger sizes.
Larger, more concentrated shipments are taking place with the latter portion of the Peruvian table grape season.
Due to a labor strike the 2020 portion of the season, shippers are making up for lost time.
Peruvian grape exports to the U.S. are up 21 percent this season.
El Pedregal S.A reports from mid January on, the U.S. market is likely to see the arrivals of large shipments of Peruvian grapes. Green varieties will probably be the largest portion of this volume concentration, since it is a fruit that most producers have prioritized to harvest, due to their greater sensitivity to quality problems.
El Pedregal predicts a significant increase in exports for both green and red seedless table grapes with exports to destinations around the world reaching around 18 million boxes and 14 to 15 million boxes respectively.
This increase will also be seen in Peruvian grape exports overall. Last season Peru exported 48 million boxes. This year it is forecasting about 55 to 56 million boxes. The season is expected to start winding down the end of January or early February. This is the time period when Chilean exports begin.
U.S. citrus shipments show mixed results in comparison to December’s estimate for the 2020-21 season.
The USDA January forecast for oranges for December’s forecast showed volumes of all variants decreasing by 11.3 million boxes from the 2019-20 season to 56 million boxes.
January’s figures continued with this decreasing trend, reporting the national production total will likely be two million boxes fewer at 54 million. Additionally, calculations specifically for Florida’s non-Valencia orange shipments is predicted to be down nine percent, showing loadings dropping from 22 million in December to 20 million this month.
Florida’s Valencia orange volume remained unchanged at 34 million boxes. Current fruit size is below average and is expected to stay that way at harvest.
Forecasted grapefruit shipments from December were also down from last year’s numbers by 450,000 boxes. However, January’s numbers break from the trend with a predicted five percent or 200,000 box increase.
If realized, this increase will still be 5% less than last season’s final grapefruit shipments.
Following suit, estimates in California and Texas for the current year increase 400,000 and 100,000 boxes, respectively. Meanwhile, January’s forecast for tangerine and tangelo production remained unchanged at 1.1 million boxes, 8% more than last season’s 1.02 million boxes.
Here’s a look at possible loading opportunities for fresh fruits and vegetable across the U.S.
Primarily thanks to imports from Mexico this is one of the most active areas for produce hauls.
Mexican blueberry imports through South Texas are getting a boost because of problems in California. Movement out of Chile is increasing. However, availability is being limited by a backlog unloading Chinese container ships at West Coast ports, with ships waiting as long as two weeks for berths. This slowdown is also affecting quality of the berries on these ships, leading to an increase in demand for fresher Mexican blueberries.
Increasing movement on Mexico strawberries crossing through Texas is expected with over 400 truck loads weekly happening now. However, avocados are triple this amount in volume. Over 1200 loads of vine ripe and plum tomatoes are now crossing weekly. Of course, there are dozens of other smaller volume items available as well.
Lower Rio Grande Valley Mexican produce – grossing about $6700 to New York City.
Shipments of Florida winter tomatoes are normally providing decent volume this time of year, but cool weather is holding back production. This also is true with dozens of other vegetable items.
The Yuma area is rolling pretty good led by head lettuce and romaine averaging around 1700 truck loads per week. There also are lesser amounts of other veggies here, as well as across the state line in California’s Imperial and Coachella Valleys. Meanwhile, Mexican crossings at Nogales continue with a wide range of veggies.
Yuma area lettuce – grossing about $5900 to Chicago.
Colorado’s San Luis Valley is moving around 500 truckloads of potatoes each week….There’s much less spud volume available from Central Wisconsin and the Red River Valley of North Dakota and Minnesota.
Eastern North Carolina continues to ship sweet potatoes, but there are less than 200 truck loads per week.
Fruit World of Reedley, CA, a family-owned, grower-shipper of organic and conventional fruit, is reporting an exceptional citrus growing season, including a variety of specialty citrus, according to a press release.
The company is shipping conventional and organic mandarins, as well as organic Cara Cara, Blood, and Navel oranges, organic Minneolas, and their year-round mainstay, organic lemons. They are also announcing the transition of even more acreage towards organic certification.
Fruit World is now shipping mandarins now through May, with its highest volumes in early spring.
“We’re unique in how we time the availability of some of our citrus like Cara Caras and Blood Oranges,” said CJ Buxman, Fruit World co-founder and an organic citrus grower. “We start our season a little later so their flavor is at its strongest and sweetest when we ship.
Fruit World will start shipping Cara Caras in mid-January, with Blood Oranges close behind in late January, both available through April. The company’s year-round organic lemon program will also see good volumes from January through April.
Contributing to the company’s citrus production this season will be Heirloom Navel Oranges from Sky Ranch, one of Kaprielian’s family ranches. Sky Ranch’s Heirloom Navel acreage is transitioning to organic, and while this year’s crop will be sold as conventional, it will follow all organic standards.