Posts Tagged “avocado shipments”
A California heatwave in 2018 did a “number” on the California avocado crop, which is expecting its smallest volume in a decade. The heat hit some of the state’s key growing regions, and most shipments this season will be limited to the Western states. Meanwhile, there was significant increase in avocado imports last year.
Current estimates are for production of 175 million pounds (79,000 metric tons), which would be 48 percent lower than last year’s 338 million pounds (153,000MT), according to The California Avocado Committee.
There hasn’t been this small of a crop since the 2009 season, when 174.5 million pounds were produced. Between then and the previous season production has fluctuated greatly, ranging from a high of 534.5 million pounds in 2010 to a low of 216 million pounds in 2017.
Two other major players in the global avocado market during the same period – Peru and South Africa – are expected to have back-to-back seasonal declines in production.
There are areas that should have had much better production which were hit hard by heat that went well over 100 degrees, with some areas reaching 116 or 117 degrees for a short period of time.
Adding to the problem was cold temperatures in the prior months, along with wildfires the previous year.
The duration of the season is set to be shorter than last year, with peak avocado shipments occurring from late March through July, as opposed to last year when volume continued into September.
There was a 15 percent increase in U.S. imported avocado volume during 2018, while crop value plunged 11 percent.
Trade statistics from the USDA indicate the total value of U.S. avocado imports totaled $2.35 billion, down from $2.64 billion in 2017. By volume, U.S. imports of avocados reached 1.04 million metric tons, up 15 percent from 900,200 metric tons in 2017.
The USDA reported Mexico accounted for 87 percent of the total volume and 88 percent of the total value of U.S. avocado imports.
U.S. imports of Mexican avocado grew 17 percent by volume but shrunk 11 percent in value in 2018, according to the USDA.
Peru was the second leading avocado supplier to the U.S., accounting for 8 percent of the value and volume of U.S. imports.
Chile ranked as the third most important avocado supplier, representing 3 percent of both volume and value of U.S. imports.
A Mexican labor dispute that broke out in late October has had U.S. avocado importers anxious, but the issue was resolved November 14th.
What Mexican growers consider low prices for their avocados was at the core of the dispute. As a result growers had installed checkpoints on all major roads in the Michoacan growing region, preventing picking crews and field trucks from entering the groves, according to the Avocado Producers and Exporting Packers Association of Michoacán (APEAM).
In the U.S., importers were becoming concerned as inventories were quickly declining. Calavo Growers Inc. of Santa Paula, CA was airing concerns of running of avocado supplies soon.
APEAM said its executives were working to resolve the issue through meetings and conversations with police agencies, the federal government and growers. The association expressed confidence these actions would soon lead to avocado shipments returning to normal.
Avocado prices began falling last August in anticipation of a bigger crop. In fact, by mid-October f.o.b. prices of a box of avocados were $12 lower than a year earlier.
Calavo estimated that the U.S. imported 1.9 million pounds of Mexican avocados from July 2017 through June 2018, and he that number was expected to be up to 2.1 million pounds for the current crop year.
McDaniel Fruit Co. of Fallbrook, CA was ware of Mexican grower disappointment in prices, but felt the lower prices were only temporary and the avocado market would rebound. Meanwhile, the quality of the Mexican avocado crop was looking very good.
Index Fresh Inc. of Riverside, CA was pointing out Mexico is expecting a slightly larger crop for the first time in five years.
Avocado supplies in the U.S. have been low due to the labor strife, although the average consumer probably didn’t notice it. Importers report it will be weeks before supplies return to normal, plus a lot of avocado supplies will not be ripe in time for Thanksgiving.
Some tropical fruit crops have been plagued by weather at the beginning of this year’s hurricane season in some growing regions, while the lasting effects of the 2017 hurricane season continues to be felt in Florida.
Despite these issues, adequate tropical fruit shipments should continue through the fall.
Entering the last several weeks of the Mexican mango shipping season, 64 million boxes had been shipped through July. A total of 83.6 million boxes is projected for the season, about 2 million more boxes than last year.
Kent and keitt are the two predominant varieties coming from the northern states of Mexico for the remainder of the season. This fall, the transition to off shore mangoes from Brazil, Ecuador and Peru occur with tommy atkins and ataulfo/honey mangoes from Brazil and Ecuador and kents from Peru.
The first shipments of Brazilian mangoes arrived in mid- to late August, followed by Ecuadoran fruit in the last half of September.
Florida avocado production is still seeing the fallout from Hurricane Irma about a year ago.
Unity Groves Corp., of Homestead, FL ships green-skin avocados, and is facing a rebuilding years resulting from the hurricane. Volume was slashed by 50 percent when normal shipments would be about 200,000 bushels. Still, avocado shipments by the company will continue through January.
Veracruz in Mexico’s prime growing region for limes, but production has been limited due to rains.
Amazon Produce Network reports there were some harvesting issues due to weather affecting crossings from Mexico into South Texas, but this has improved.
Unity Groves Corp has noted its Florida lime shipments will be about 50 percent less this year due to Hurricane Irma a year ago.
World Variety Produce of Los Angeles notes there should be normal shipments of other tropical fruits. Jackfruit got underway in the last half of September and will be available through the fall. Yellow Dragon from Ecuador is now in normal supply. Good volumes with white and red dragon fruit out of Vietnam is expected, while red flesh dragon fruits is typically more limited.
It remains to be see whether passion fruit shipments from California will be hurt by hot weather during the growing season.
Taiwan’s starfruit season was launched at the end of September.
Thomas Fresh of Calgary, Alberta sees high volumes of dragon fruit, pummelo, star fruit and cracked coconut.
HLB Specialties of Pompano Beach, FL handled its first Mexican organic formosa papayas in mid-September. Brazilian golden papaya imports improved in September. Additionally, imports of Guatemalan rambutan season will continue until mid-November, and Honduras got underway in early September with good production.
Yellow dragon fruit from Ecuador stared in early September.
California avocados are dropping from the trees because of triple digit temperatures that have been common since early July….Meanwhile, imported Chilean mandarin volume has have increased nearly five-fold during the past six years.
Some temperatures have hit 115 degrees F. For example, Del Rey Avocado Co. Inc. of Fallbrook, CA reports avocado groves in San Diego County’s Pauma Valley and Temecula have suffered from the heat. As a result, fruit drop resulting from the heat is expected to cut avocado shipments and possibly increase the price of California avocados in late summer marketed in August, particularly after Labor Day.
The 2019 avocado season could also suffer from this year’s weather, particularly with potential tree damage.
In the southern growing regions of San Diego and Riverside counties, the harvest was about 85 percent finished when the early July heat hit groves. To date, California growers have harvested about 300 million pounds of fruit. Most of the remaining crop is in cooler areas, north and toward the coast.
California’s avocado shipments this season was originally estimated to be 350 million pounds, but some observers have lowered their estimate to 320 million or less.
Shipments of about 13 million pounds per week in early July faded to 10 million pounds by mid-July. California avocado shipments are now dropping sharply.
Imports of Peruvian avocados began arriving in peak volumes in early August and supplies from Mexico are also available.
The first shipments of Chilean mandarins arrived by boat at U.S. ports in late July with 64 tons on the East Coast and 21 tons for Canada.
Although this season got off to a slower start than last year, Chile expects to ship a record 101,000 tons of mandarins to North America this year, a 32 percent over last year. In 2012 Chile exported 22,000 tons of mandarins. Today, the Chilean mandarin industry has become the main supplier of easy peelers to North America.
Here are updates on strawberry, avocado and apple shipments.
As of April 7th California strawberry shipments had totaled around 17.5 million trays, which is over 3 million fewer trays than at the same time in 2017. Likewise, at the same time two years ago 27.4 million trays of strawberries had been shipped. Factors ranging from heavy rains to cold weather have been blamed for the lighter volume thus far this season. Assuming improved growing conditions are ahead with the arrival of spring, California shipments are expected to increase soon to over 5 million trays per week and eventually exceed 8 million trays on a weekly basis.
Ventura County strawberries and vegetables – grossing about $7500 to New York City.
If estimates hold about 60 million pounds of avocados will be shipped weekly during the month of April Over 80 percent of the volume will be imports from Mexico. With this kind of volume, avocado shipments leading up to Cinco de Mayo (May 5) will comparable to those weeks leading up to the Super Bowl. The “Big Game” last February resulted in 200 million pounds of the fruit shipped in the four weeks leading up to the football game.
Mexican is in it second half of the season for shipping avocados. More No. 2 product, is typically shipped this time of the season, but no significant quality issues are being reported.. California’s new season is well underway.
Mexican avocado and vegetables crossing through South Texas – grossing about $5800 to New York City.
Significantly more apples remain in U.S. storages as of early April than at this time a year ago. About 61.3 million (42-pound) cartons of fresh apples were stored as of April 1st, up 16 percent from 2017 when there were 53.1 million cartons remaining to be shipped, which is 18 percent greater than the five-year average of 51.8 million cartons.
Gala apples remaining is storage were 10.76 million cartons, up 11 percent from 9.6 million cartons in 2017 and 62 percent greater than 6.67 million cartons in 2016.
Fresh Honeycrisp available was at 3.38 million cartons, more than double the 1.45 million cartons in 2017 and 1.61 million cartons on hand two years ago.
Red delicious remaining to be shipped were pegged at 15.65 million cartons, down 23 pecent compared with 20.2 million cartons in 2017 and up 7 percent from 14.6 million cartons two years ago.
Granny smith apples available were 10.1 million cartons, more than double the 4.8 million cartons in 2017 and 13 percent higher than 7.8 million cartons two years ago.
Yakima Valley apples – grossing about $6700 to New York City.
The start date has been set and Vidalia Onion shipments get underway in a couple of weeks. Meanwhile, here’s an update on California avocado and strawberry shipments.
The Vidalia onion season will officially start on April 20th, which was recently announced by the Georgia Department of Agriculture and the Vidalia Onion Committee.
A starting date was implemented several years at as some shippers were concerned about immature or low-quality onions hitting the market early in the season. In 2017, April 12 was the start date, and in 2016 it was April 25. The packing date is based on soil and weather conditions in the 20-county area approved to market onions as Vidalias.
In 2017 Vidalia onions were grown on more than 11,000 acres.
California Avocado Shipments
This year’s avocado forecast is set at 374.6 million pounds, which is significantly higher than last year’s 215.8 million pounds. There was the normal light volume in February, but significant volume increase are seen in coming weeks as there will be avocados coming out of both California and Mexico.
With the close of February, 2 million to 4 million pounds per week were being shipped and volume increases of March are expected to continue April until movement eventually hits about 10 million pounds per week.
Ventura County avocados, strawberries and vegetables – grossing about $3900 to Dallas.
California Shipper’s Strawberry Outlook
by California Giant Berry Farms
Watsonville, CA – Spring conditions have finally arrived in California to help bring on the new strawberry crop for California Giant. Unfortunately, the company missed the chance to take advantage of the early Easter holiday which provides opportunity to build demand and lay the groundwork for a strong spring season. However, conditions have changed significantly and now California Giant is now looking ahead to the next chance with Mother’s Day.
What initially looked like an early season for the company’s California strawberry crop, didn’t quite happen as growers thought it would. . Additionally, the company had weather issues in their two other regions, Mexico and Florida, which typically helps fill the early season gaps.
“…In Watsonville and Salinas we expect big beautiful fruit next week bypassing the typical mud crop” says JT Tipton, District Manager for Salinas and Watsonville. Barring any unexpected return of winter conditions, the sales team is looking forward to Mother’s Day ahead and promotable volume to support their key customers.”
Avocado shipments from both California and Mexico are looking strong, while a big increase is seen coming for imported golden kiwifruit.
Mexican avocado shipping volumes are big the second and third week of January, but reaches a peak in the fourth week of the month leading up the big game February 4th. It is known as the Super Bowl effect.
The Hass Avocado Board reports 204 million pounds of avocados were shipped into the U.S. during the first four weeks of January. Of the total amount of avocados, 93 percent were imported from Mexico, with 3.6 percent coming from from California, with 2.7 percent from the Dominican Republic with Chile supplying 0.7 percent.
Despite widespread shortages of trucks being reported around the U.S. in the first half of January, it apparently had minimal affect on shipments for the Super Bowl.
California Avocado Shipping Forecast
Avocado shipments are currently originating both from Mexico and California, although the vast majority are coming from South of the U.S. border.
For example, West Pak Avocado Inc. of Murrieta, CA sources most of its avocados from Mexico and California and sees good supply and quality this season from both areas. Mexico will have strong volume continuing into the summer. California should have good shipments totaling around 374 million pounds.
There was limited California volume is available for the Super Bowl because it is so early in the season, when the limited shipments are typically directed to California receivers. National California avocado shipments typically ramps up in March and April.
Golden Kiwi Shipments
The golden kiwifruit season for imports from New Zealand recently ended, but importers already are laying plans from the new arrivals coming in May.
Golden kiwifruit imports more than doubled in 2017, with the SunGold variety from Zespri accounting for 80 percent of the category. The company is based in New Zealand and set a record with 27.8 million pounds of the fruit imported.
Zespri is planning a 50 percent growth for the coming year and extend the season at the season into March and April.
Here’s a shipping forecast for California cherries, and an update on California avocado shipments. At the same, you won’t believe the whopping diesel fuel tax increase being produced in that state.
California cherry shipments are predicted to get an early start this season with initial loadings getting underway the last week of April. The season should run through June. Peak shipments are expected to occur the second, third and last week of May. Assuming favorable weather holds, there should be strong volume leading up to Mother’s Day (May 14th) and Memorial Day (May 29th). While good quality and volume are being forecast, no firm estimates have been released. While California has the nation’s first domestic cherries each year, its total shipments are relatively small compared to Northwest cherry volume, which we’ll report on next week.
Imported shipments of Mexican avocados have declined for the first time in possibly 10 years as the season comes to an end. Mexico shipped 2 billion pounds of avocados to the U.S. in 2016 and is projected to send 1.7 billion by the end of its season in June. Volume from Mexico has been increasing 12 to 15 percent a year while avocado consumption has been following a similar increase.
Now, the California avocado shipping season is well underway. However, projected volume from the West Coast is only at about 200 million pounds — about half of the 2016 volume. One of the biggest shipping season for avocados lies just ahead as Cinco de Mayo falls on a Friday, May 5.
California Fuel Tax
Asking state lawmakers for a more efficient plan, Western Growers is opposing California’s proposed transportation infrastructure funding package.
While rain drenched California citrus isn’t having significant quality problems, that could change during the weeks ahead. Meanwhile, here’s a look at avocado shipments from Mexico and California.
The bottom line is citrus growers don’t know what long-term effect the recent rains will have on the crop as navels and cara cara navels hit peak loadings. Excessive rain and moisture can adversely affect low-hanging fruit on trees, so packinghouses are running a little slower to monitor spoilage.
Gold nugget variety mandarins and Ojai pixie tangerines — late season specialty varieties, also recently got underway by Sunkist Growers. Additionally, California Star Ruby grapefruit shipments are about to start.
While quality issues down the road are a question mark, more certainty is that the 2017 harvest will end earlier this season. Instead of lasting until the Fourth of July, shipments will end in early June.
Total tonnage harvested in 2017 is expected to be 15 to 19 percent less than a year ago.
Southern California citrus, avocados – grossing about $4500 to Atlanta.
California avocado shipments should end its season with about 195 million (4,875 truck loads) compared to nearly 400 million pounds in 2016. Larger avocado crops are often followed by smaller crops the next year.
California loadings could increase by mid-March and into April to 8 to 10 million pounds per week. This would compare to shipments as high as 15 million pounds per week a year ago.
Imported Mexican avocados, tropical fruits and vegetables through South Texas – grossing about $2700 to Chicago.
A snowfall described by some that only occurs every 25 years hit the major onion shipping area of western Idaho and Malheur County, Oregon on January 8, damaging a number of structures, including some storage sheds. Transportation has been very difficult due to highways being closed, or are difficult to navigate.
Beside the large amounts of snow that fell over the weekend, rains followed that made the snow even heavier.
Snake River Produce of Nyssa, OR, lost a storage facility. Although it didn’t have onions stored there, several trucks reportedly sustained heavy damage. Three other Nyssa onion operations had packing and storage buildings collapse. One company reportedly lost about 4,200 bins of onions.
In Ontario, OR one shed lost about 2,000 bins of onions when the roof gave way.
Haun Packing of Weiser, ID, reported the loss of a storage building collapse. While the onions had already been moved out there was some equipment inside.
Collapses in the region were reported to be about 20 structures, including four or five packing sheds, with storage buildings comprising the rest.
Facilities costing hundreds of thousands of dollars even before losses of product or equipment are tallied are expected to be very significant.
California used to the place if a produce trucker was hauling avocados. However, you load avocados now, chances are good the pick up will be occurring in South Texas with imported Mexican avocados.
Mexico provide year-round availability and a consistent, high-quality fruit and is the primary reason for the astronomical growth in popularity in the U.S.
Before Mexico, It used to be avocado availability was inconsistent due to the alternate-bearing nature of crops in both California and Chile. Supplies would be typically in good supply one year and tight the following season.
However, avocados grown Mexico year after year tend to provide a lot more consistency in supplies and quality. Buyers for major American retail grocery chains like that.
Additionally, Mexico has four blooms each year and farmers can grow in altitudes ranging from 4,000 feet to 8,000 feet. This is not the case in Chile or California.
Imported Mexican avocados account for at least 75 percent of the avocados shipped to U.S. markets.
Some California avocado growers, as well as a number of produce brokers and shippers in the U.S. sell more Mexican avocados than their own product grown in California.