Archive For The “Trucking Reports” Category

Carolina Veggie Loadings are Underway; BC Record Cherry Shipments Forecast

By |

DSCN9473Carolina vegetable shipments are underway….Over 3,000 miles away in British Columbia, the region’s largest cherry shipper is looking to have record loadings.

While North and South Carolina had their share of weather issues early in the year, it appears summer and fall vegetables shipments should be fairly normal.    While crops such as peaches, blueberries and spring vegetables took a big hit, there’s much more optimism for the coming months.

Good shipments are seen for peppers, squash, cucumbers, greens, including cabbage and collards, as well as eggplant, okra, tomatoes, onions, kale and lettuce, and sweet potatoes.

Many of the vegetable shipments are just getting underway.  Weather issues forced delays on several types of summer vegetables, such as squash and sweet corn.  However, bell peppers, potatoes appear to be on schedule to run from about June 6-10 to the end of July.

While a good percent of North Carolina vegetables are shipped locally and regionally, some end up as away as in Canadian markets and as far south as Florida.

Canadian Cherry Shipments

Cooler weather this spring has resulted in a later start to the season for all commodities, which means cherry shipments will not begin until the latter part of June. BC Tree Fruits Cooperative of Kelowna, B.C. is forecasting it will have a record 12 million pounds of cherries for the upcoming season.  Last year’s take was 8 million pounds, which weather had reduced from a 12 million-pound forecast.

BC Tree Fruits also said it is expecting “very good” volumes of peaches, nectarines, prunes, plums and grapes, with volumes similar to last year.

“With weather serving up a cooler spring this year, it has enabled our grower base to be prepared for a delicious and high quality crop of cherries at more traditional timing,” BC Tree Fruits Marketing Manager Chris Pollock said in a news release. “Cherries and the rest of our summer fruits went through the bloom period exceptionally well and our growers are excited for a great crop this year with harvest starting end of June for cherries in the south, with the fruit hitting retail shelves very soon after.”

The primary market for BC Tree Fruits summer fruits is Western Canada, although the co-op also continues to export increased volumes of cherries to the U.S. and other markets.



Read more »

California and Arizona Potato Shipments are Going Strong

By |

DSCN9471Potato shipments in good numbers are now coming out of Kern County, California, as well as from Eloy, Arizona and continuing until early July.

Following a recent shipping gap in late May,   Kern County potato shipments should be relatively strong they peak in June and continue until about July 10th.

These California spud loading typically begin  in late April or early May and last for about two months.   This year, the first potatoes were dug and shipped in late April,  but several growers didn’t get underway in Kern County until the second week of May.  This was due to their earliest new potatoes being grown a couple of hundred miles south in the California desert.

This season there is 1,058 acres of white potatoes, 1,853 acres of reds and 1,834 acres of yellows in Kern County.  This year there were no russet potatoes which had been declining for several years.

Kern County potatoes and carrot shipments – grossing about $6100 to Atlanta.


Arizona Potato Shipments

By Potandon Produce L.L.C.

Idaho Falls, ID – Potandon Produce L.L.C., the exclusive marketing agent for Pinto Creek Co., LLC in Eloy, AZ is now shipping fresh potatoes from Arizona in good volume.

Potandon will be shipping mini potatoes, red potatoes, and gold potatoes in the Green Giant™ label from Pinto Creek,.

Red and yellow potato shipments will continue until the July 4 weekend. Mini red, mini yellow, medley packs and purple potatoes will ship through August.  Potandon also has started moving Arizona product to their Idaho cross-dock facility next week for mixed loads.

The Pinto Creek packing facility has seen constant improvement over the past five years, from a new storage facility to state of the art grading and sizing equipment, making it one of the premier red potato packing sheds in the southwest.

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, and is able to provide year-round supply to any size retail, foodservice, or wholesale customer.

Read more »

Latest Estimates for NW Cherry Shipments Increases 4 Percent

By |

DSCN4890by Northwest Cherry Growers

Over 75 growers, shippers and field team leaders from across the Northwest Cherry industry met recently to discuss the 2017 cherry crop.

This collective group meets annually to discuss the developing crop potential across the growing districts within each of the 5 member states, and formulates a crop estimate based on attendee input.  The 5-State estimate is often the most accurate look at the crop as it is in real time, provided by growers who have walked out of their orchards and into this meeting.  It does not, however, take into account the annual field team data model and historical algorithms with which we project the NWC’s 4 rounds of estimates.

The round table estimate for the Northwest 2017 sweet cherry crop is 227,000 metric tons or 22.7 million 20 lb. equivalent boxes.   That estimate would put the coming crop 8% larger than last year’s 20.9 million box season.  This crop projection allows for substantial promotional opportunities (and heavy shipments) all season long – late June through August!

Extended bloom and cool spring weather indicate a longer season, stretching from mid-June through the end of August. for cherry shipments.  The 2017 shipping season should last between 90 and 100 days!   Significant volume into the month of August is anticipated.

According to grower reports, early varieties such as Chelan and Santina are currently on track for similar crops to last season’s record early variety shipments.  This strengthens the expectations that once harvest in the Northwest begins, it should accelerate at a rapid velocity.  The attending group in general expects to see harvest begin in the June 12th to 15th window.  Much of Washington’s Bing acreage didn’t set in 2016, but the orchards have rebounded with a slightly larger than average bloom in response this Spring.  Fruit is well-spread throughout the trees and the regions – which bodes well for timing and quality.

The Northwest Rainier crop (including all yellow-fleshed sub-varieties) is reported as looking strong, with many of the growers estimating increases of 20-25% over last year.  The 2015 and 2016 Rainier crops were strikingly similar, and both finished around 1.8 million 15-pound boxes.  We expect to see plenty of fruit in July this year, including around National Rainier Cherry Day on July 11th.

Washington apple shipments – grossing about $4100 to Chicago.


Read more »

New Jersey Peach Growers Expecting Good Shipments this Season

By |

DSCN9484by The New Jersey Peach Promotion Council

GLASSBORO, NJ — Other than a mild February which forced apricots and some plum varieties to bloom early, most New Jersey peaches experienced a cool and relatively normal winter.

“While our peaches and nectarines bloomed about ten days early we have not had sub-freezing temperatures to injure peach flowers and fruit”, said Santo John Maccherone, owner of Circle M Farms in Salem, chair of the New Jersey Peach Promotion Council(NJPPC) and president of the New Jersey State Board of Agriculture. “My crop is mostly heavy except for a block of the late yellow-fleshed peach Jerseyqueen and some white-fleshed nectarine varieties.” He emphasized that crop development is running about ten days earlier than 2016 and he expects to be picking and marketing his first peaches in late June

“We have a full crop of fruit this year” said Tom Holtzhauser, operator of Holtzhauser Farms on Woodland Avenue in Mullica Hill.  “Last year we were badly hurt by spring temperatures and our crop was nonexistent,” Mr. Holtzhauser, a director of the NJPPC sells a wide variety of peaches white and yellow fleshed, and flat peaches both retail at his farm market and wholesale to various restaurants and farm market buyers.

“Most growers in southern New Jersey have started to thin off their heavy crop at this time,” stated Jerry Frecon, technical and horticultural consultant to the NJPPC, professor emeritus at Rutgers University and a retired peach specialist..  “A few growers were brave enough to even thin blossoms with mechanical and string thinners. Brave because there is always a high probability of low temperature injury during bloom so thinning at this time can be very risky.” He said most growers are thinning off small fruit by hand and with mechanical aids.

Recent statistics published by the NJ Peach Promotion Council estimate that NJ growers are producing about 5500 acres of peaches and nectarines and should harvest between 55 and 60 million pounds of fruit in 2017.  “We are always optimistic at this time of the year,” said Maccherone, “but we still have a long way until we pick and market the fruit, and lots of things can happen.”

The New Jersey Peach Promotion Council is a non-profit voluntary organization of growers, shippers, wholesalers and associated industries dedicated to maintaining a viable peach industry in the Garden State for the purpose of preserving farmers and farmland; and to providing the highest quality and best tasting fresh peaches for consumers.

New Jersey is the fourth largest peach producing state in the country, with approximately 80 orchards on 5,000 acres. 


Read more »

Stemilt Artisan Organics Apricot Harvest Set; Texas Onion Shipping Wrap Up

By |

DSCN0509+1by Stemilt Growers

WENATCHEE, Wash. –  Stemilt and their marketing partner, Douglas Fruit, are gearing up for another successful Artisan Organics® apricot season, which is predicted to start two weeks later than normal. Stemilt expects their organic apricots to begin harvest in late June, with volumes ramping up quickly for promotable volumes throughout July….Meanwhile, here’s a summary of the just finished Texas 1015 onion shipping season.

With a historic early start last year, it is only fitting to experience a late start for crops up and down the West Coast this year.

The Douglas family tree fruit growing roots date back to the 1890s and today, the fourth generation is hands-on when it involves the family’s growing and packing business, which includes apricots, peaches, nectarines, apples, and cherries.  In 2007, the Douglas family started the transition process to move the majority of its apricot orchards to organic production, as well as their entire crop of peaches and nectarines, viewing the move to organic as an opportunity to differentiate the flavors of its stone fruits.

“We’ve found a great niche in growing apricots organically that matches well with our flavor focus,” said Jill Douglas, co-president of Douglas Fruit. “We farm in the best locale, Washington’s Columbia Basin, where warm days and cool nights create beautifully colored fruits with exceptional flavors. Artisan Organics® apricots really exceed standards thanks to the climate and organic farming practices.”

Stemilt accounts for approximately 40 percent of Washington State’s apricot crop taking the leading position in apricot production. Stemilt is also the leader in organic cots, with 60 percent of its entire apricot crop grown and certified as organic.  The leading variety that Stemilt produces is Robada.

The peak of organic apricot shipping season should start in early July and continue through the first three weeks of July.  Organic food sales are growing by double-digits annually.


Yakima Valley apple shipments – grossing about $5700 to New York City.


Texas Onion Shipments

Texas onion shipments were down early in the season, but finished strong where shipments for the overall season were about average.  The Lower Rio Grande Valley was hit by excessive rains and insect damage by thrips. Thrips are a minute black winged insect that sucks plant sap and can be serious pest to ornamental and food plants when present in large numbers. Texas 1015 onion shipments got underway in early March about a month earlier than normal.   Typically Texas will ship about 350 to 400 truck loads of 800 bags (40,000 pounds) daily, but during the period for Easter loadings shipments rose to around 480 to525 loads per day.

Lower Rio Grande Valley watermelon shipments – grossing about $4400 to New York City.


Read more »

New Jersey Vegetable Shipments are Picking Up with June Arrival

By |

DSCN9491New Jersey vegetable shipments got underway in mid-April with spinach, collards, beets, radishes, escarole, endive, Swiss chard, lettuces and herbs such as parsley, dill, coriander and cilantro.

Asparagus loadings from Southern New Jersey began in mid-April in excellent quality.   The state ranks fourth in U.S. production of asparagus.   In 2016 some 5.6 million pounds of asparagus was harvested off 1,500 acres in New Jersey.

Lettuces became available in late April.  Cabbage, pickles and turnip shipments have just started.  Cucumbers and squash will get underway in early June.   Loadings for sweet corn and tomatoes will be available by the Fourth of July and, with an early start to the season this year, both should be in decent volume by then.

Minor quantities of early blueberry varieties like Weymouth should be starting in early June. The much more widely planted Duke variety should start three to four days later, with volume available a week after that.  In 2015, New Jersey produced about 9,100 acres of berries yielding about 48.6 million pounds.

Yellow peach volume should start with the early cling varieties in mid-July, with volume by late July.  The widely planted John Boy clingless varieties should start by the end of July.  Good yellow volume is expected by early August through early September.  White peach volume begins with the White Lady variety in mid-August through early September.  About 150 peach producers grew about 42.2 million pounds of quality peaches on 4,700 total peach acres, according to the last U.S. Department of Agriculture census.

More than two dozen vegetables are being shipped, many to regional markets, but some are destined up and down the East Coast and even to the Midwest.

New Jersey has a great diversity of fruits and vegetables due to its moderate climate and growing conditions.  The Garden State’s  11 principal fresh-market vegetables are tomatoes, sweet corn, peppers, cabbage, cucumbers, lettuce, spinach, eggplant, escarole, snap beans and asparagus.  The five principal fresh market fruits are strawberries, blueberries, peaches, apples and cranberries.




Read more »

NW Cherry Shipments Set for June Start; South African Clementine Imports are Coming

By |

DSCN9478Northwest cherry shipments will get underway next month with more volume expected than usual later in the season.  Meanwhile, South African clementine exports are expected to have good volume this season.
In the first shipping estimate of the year,  21.8 million 20-pound boxes of Northwest cherries are expected.  This is an increase from 20.9 million boxes last year,  but less than the 2014 record crop of 23.2 million boxes.
The first of four cherry shipping estimates set for release this season.  The May 4th crop estimate covers all Northwest growing districts.  Cherry shipments  will begin later than last year, pushing more of the loadings into July and August.

The forecast has 5.2 million boxes of cherries will be shipped in June, 13.3 million boxes in July and 3.3 million boxes in August.  Last year, the Northwest shipped 500,000 boxes in May, 10 million boxes in June, 7.9 million boxes in July and very limited volume in August.

The 2017 estimate includes a strong rainier crop, exceeding the nearly identical 1.7 million box (15-pound) crops of 2015 and 2016.
With bloom running very late this, the estimate said consistent warm weather produced a great bloom across all regions. The earliest growers expect shipments to start during the second week of June, with volume extending through August.

Citrus Imports

The first South African clementines are expected to arrive in the U.S. in late May or early June.  However, California mandarins are expected to ship a little longer this season, into mid-June.

The season for South African mandarins will extend into late September.  South Africa’s late-season mandarins are exceptional, and should start arriving in the U.S. in August.   The heavest volume is expected to start in late June or early July.

A clementine  is a hybrid between a mandarin orange and a sweet orange and was named such in 1902.] The exterior is a deep orange color with a smooth, glossy appearance.

The mandarin orange, also known as the mandarin or mandarine, is a small citrus tree with fruit resembling other oranges.  Mandarins are smaller and oblate, rather than spherical like the common oranges. The taste is considered less sour, as well as sweeter and stronger.

Read more »

Big Shipments of Mexican Grapes are Seen; Hood River Oregon Pears will be Late

By |

DSCN9470Big volume Mexican grape shipments are underway and volume and is more than double that of California’s Coachella Valley, which also has  is shipping.  Meanwhile, here’s a peak at Hood River pear shipments coming this summer.

Mexican grape shipments should hit nearly  20 million cases this year, exceeding 2016 volume by 3.3 million cases.

Nearly all Mexican grapes are grown in the state of Sonora.

Export volume this season is estimated at 19.4 million cartons compared to last year’s total exports of 16.1 million.

As usual, 2017’s biggest increase will come from the red Flame variety, which is up 1.3 million cases over a year ago.  Flames this year should total of 10.5 million cases from Sonora.  A year ago, that production was 9.2 million, or an increase of 12.5 percent.

With 3.9 million cases, Sugraone again exceeds the green grape category with the Sugraone volume  up by 22.9 percent.  This is 892,000 cases more thane 2016, totaling 3 million cases.  The third-largest Sonoran grape category this year are green grapes, which includes Perlettes, Primes and early green varieties. T hat total volume is expected to be up 17.2 percent this year to 3 million cases, up 515,000 from last year.

The biggest increase for 2017, is the black grape volume at 35.3 percent.  Black grapes this year should total 900,000 cartons compared to 582,000 in 2016.

Red Globe production in 2017 is up 26.1 percent to 700,000 and other varieties are up 25.6 percent to 400,000 this season.

Sonoran volume was building in early May, and peaked in mid-May with heavy shipments seen forfor Memorial Day (May 29) and well into June.  Mexican grape shipments continue until late June.

Oregon Pear Shipments

Oregon’s Hood River pear shipments will start later this season due to winter growing conditions.  A year ago, the regional harvest and packing got under way the last week of July  The 2017 season is running seven to 10 days later than normal, and three weeks behind a year ago.  This means shipments of bartletts and starkrimson won’t start until later in August. Pear loading will continue through October.  Green anjou, red anjou, bosc, comice, forelle and seckel are usually about three weeks behind bartletts and should start shipping by mid-September.

Read more »

Bee Sweet Citrus Sees Strong Summer Import Season; Apples in Storage Up over Last Year

By |

DSCN2885+1by Bee Sweet Citrus

FOWLER, Calif., –  Bee Sweet Citrus Sales Manager Joe Berberian welcomes the start of Bee Sweet’s 2017 summer import program.

“Bee Sweet Citrus is grower, packer and shipper of premium California citrus,” said Berberian. “While our domestic season has come to an end, we can continue to provide exceptional citrus to our consumers through our summer import program.”

For over 15 years, Bee Sweet Citrus has been developing close ties with both Chilean and Peruvian citrus growers. In order to ensure that all imported products are safe, fresh and of high quality, the Bee Sweet Citrus Food Safety and Quality Control team ensure that all products are certified and audited in food safety, social accountability and sustainability.

“All imported citrus is sent straight to our facility where it’s re-graded to ensure the high quality,” said Bee Sweet Citrus Sales Representative Jason Sadoian. “Additionally, we offer our customers the ability to repack and reconfigure the fruit to any specific pack style that they may want during the program.”

Between May and October, Bee Sweet Citrus receives imported Clementines, Navel Oranges, Cara Caras, Minneolas and lemons. In addition, the Bee Sweet Citrus sales team handles all import clearance, logistics, inventory and conducts weekly market analysis calls with their international partners.

About Bee Sweet Citrus

A grower, packer and shipper of California citrus,  the company was founded in 1987>  It is a family owned and operated company, and ships over 20 different varieties of citrus.

Apple Shipments

Thanks to a large amount of red delicious and gala apples, May 1 fresh market apples remaining to be shipped to at 38.7 million cartons, up 16% from a year ago and 7% more than the five-year average of 36 million cartons.
The U.S. Apple Association reported fresh market holdings on May 1 were 38.7 million cartons, up from 33.4 million cartons in 2016 but down from 44.9 million cartons to 2015.
Washington fresh apples in storage stood at 35.9 million cartons, which accounted for 93% of total U.S. fresh supplies.

Read more »

Georgia Produce Shipping Update; Port Manatee is Looking to Expand Business

By |

DSCN1324+1There’s been some adjustments in the shipping forecast for some Georgia produce shipments since a March freeze.  Also, Port Manatee in Florida is looking to expand business with South America.

An update on Georgia produce shipments has been made after the USDA declare nearly two dozen counties a disaster as a result of a March freeze.

Georgia blueberry shipments will be 75 percent less this season.  Loading are taking place and will continue through June.  Georgia had originally estimated a total of 80 million pounds for the fresh and processed markets.   2016 blueberry shipments totaled a little over 70 million pounds, with about 45 million pounds going to the fresh market.  Georgia’s record year of blueberry production was 96 million pounds total volume in 2014, 58 million pounds of which went to the fresh market.


Georgia peach shipments are starting any day now.  While the original estimate for losses from the freeze were in the 40 to 50 percent range, the losses have now improved.  Recently some growers was talking peach shipments should be down about 25 to 35 percent.  Last year, Georgia shipped 43,000 tons of peaches.

Vidalia Onions

There is good supply, quality and steady shipments of Vidalia onions occurring, averaging about 500 truck loads per week. Vidalia onions were the only Georgia produce crop not affected by that March freeze.

Vidalia onions – grossing about $2000 to Chicago.

Vegetable shipments

Georgia green bean shipments have been underway since the first week of May and should continue through mid-July.  Sweet corn is just getting underway, but good volume won’t occur until  June and continuing through July Fourth.  Georgia squash and zucchini loadings started a couple weeks early this season and will run through June.

Port Manatee

Port Manatee, Palmetto, Fla., is planning to expand commercial ties with Colombia and Chile.

“We see significant opportunity for growing trade between our nation and Port Manatee,” Juan C. Barrera, general deputy director for the United States of ProColombia USA, said in a news release. “Both import and export opportunities exist for businesses in Manatee County and beyond, and we look forward to exploring these mutually beneficial possibilities,”

“We are enthused about fortifying the business relationship between Manatee County interests, including our port, and our counterparts in Colombia and are committed to growing such ties,” Carlos Buqueras, executive director of Port Manatee, said in the release.

“We have the largest dock side refrigerated facility in Florida,” Buqueras said. “We have such capacity, it’s a shame not to utilize it.”

A deal with Chile is still in negotiations, Buqueras said.

“It’ll start with test shipments,” he said. “That will give us the opportunity to make corrections or enhance speed to market,”

Produce currently represents 30% of Port Manatee’s import business, according to Buqueras. He said it is too early in negotiations to say how much produce imports would increase because of expanded ties.

Read more »