Posts Tagged “blueberry shipments”

Del Monte Optimistic About Blueberry Season; Monsanto is Seeking Sweeter Strawberries

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A12Optimism abounds at Del Monte Fresh Produce as the domestic blueberry shipments progress.  Also, Monsanto is looking to genetically alter strawberry to get a sweet taste and longer shelf life.

Del Monte Fresh

By Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A. Inc.

Coral Gables, FL – Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. (Del Monte) is optimistic about the domestic blueberry season that spans between March and September.  It began in the south and eastern states, continued to California in April, and later into British Columbia.

Del Monte’s Chilean import blueberry season finished with increased volumes over the prior years and it continues to expand to meet the growing interest from retailers and food service customers. 

“The demand for fresh blueberries in the United States has grown steadily over the past decade. Per capita consumption more than tripled since 2005, exceeding 1.5 pounds per person,” said Dennis Christou, VP Marketing N.A. “Del Monte has been a key player in growing and shipping premium blueberries in Chile for more than 25 years and we continue to expand our operations to meet this growing demand. A major advantage we have is our Del Monte Fresh Cut business which these products support.”

The Mexico blueberry season will begin in early fall.

About Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc.  Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. is one of North America’s leading marketers and distributors of high-quality fresh and fresh-cut fruit and vegetables.  Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A., Inc. markets its products in North America under the Del Monte® brand (as well as other brands), a symbol of product innovation, quality, freshness and reliability for more than 125 years.

 Sweeter Strawberries

by Erin Brodwin, Business Insider

In a move aimed at securing a place in the rapidly evolving food technology scene, the agricultural giant Monsanto has invested $125 million in a gene-editing startup called Pairwise.

The alliance could tee up Monsanto, long known for its controversial dealings with farmers and its role in popularizing genetically modified organisms, to introduce some of the first produce made using the blockbuster gene-editing tool Crispr. Sweeter strawberries with a longer shelf life could be among the earliest offerings.

The tool allows scientists to accurately target specific problem areas within the genome of a living thing, opening up the potential to tweak the DNA of everything from row crops like corn and soy to produce like apples and asparagus to make the produce taste sweeter, last longer on the shelf, and even tolerate drought or flooding.

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Shipping Roundup: Texas Onions, Ontario Produce, Colorado veggies and Blueberry Imports

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A2Here’s a news roundup ranging from Texas onion loadings to increasing shipments by an Ontario company, as well as a Colorado produce shipper, and finally, an update on blueberry imports.

Texas Onion Shipments

South Texas onion shipments get underway within the next couple of weeks, but due to industry consolidation and decreasing numbers of onion growers and shippers over the past 15 years, there has been a 31 percent decrease in the number of onion producers and a 34 percent decrease in the number of handlers.

The Rio Grande Valley of South Texas has about 60 onion growers and about 30 shippers.  Total shipments of south Texas onions were about 3 million 50-pound equivalents for the 2015-16 season,

Texas onions, Mexican imported produce – grossing about $3400 to Chicago.

Red Sun Shipments

Red Sun Farms of Lemington, ON is expanding its shipments of tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers to include Golden Sun Avocados.

Best known as a North American greenhouse grower, Red Sun Farms will be handling avocados produced in Mexico, and distributed through the company’s supply chain to service customers throughout North America.

Red Sun Farms will begin distributing the Mexican avocados during the second quarter of 2018.

Sakata Sweet Corn

Sakata Farms of Brighton, CO is changing its farming operation and discontinuing sweet corn production, and concentrating on onions and other crops.

The company is holding a farm equipment auction March 10 at 9:30 a.m. Mountain time.  The company will no longer raise sweet corn, broccoli and cabbage.

Blueberry Imports

Fresh blueberry shipments take place in the U.S. the year around, made possible in large part by the increasing amount of imports from South America, which supplies product during the offseason of U.S. blueberry shippers.  Chile is the leading country supplying “blues” this time of the year to the U.S., accounting for 52.7 percent of fresh cultivated blueberries over the past five years.

Since 2013, however, Mexico, Argentina and Peru significantly increased exports to the U.S.  Argentina has upped exports to the U.S. by 35 percent from 2013 to 2017, Uruguay is up 46 percent and Mexico is up 414 percent.

Percentage wise, the biggest increase has come from  Peru, with U.S. imports from that country up 3,971 percent from 2013 to 2017.

Overall, blueberry imports are up 44 percent.

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Savannah Port is Approved for Arrivals of Blueberries from Chile by APHIS

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ChiquitaBoatBy USDA APHIS

Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is amending the entry requirements for the importation of fresh blueberry fruit from Chile into the United States. After an operational evaluation, APHIS adds Savannah, Georgia, as an approved port of arrival through which fresh blueberry consignments from Chile may be imported while meeting phytosanitary safeguards and requirements. All other requirements in the January 27, 2014 (DA-2014-07), version of the Federal Order remain unchanged.

To prevent the introduction of European grapevine moth (Lobesia botrana or EGVM) into the United States, APHIS requires blueberry shipments from regions VI, VII, and VIII destined to the United States to be fumigated with methyl bromide at the point of origin or at the first U.S. port of arrival under 7 U.S. Code of Federal Regulations Part 305. In addition, consignments from regions in Chile other than VI, VII, and VIII, that do not require fumigation, are subject to an increased rate of preclearance inspection through the APHIS preclearance program at the port of export.

Chilean blueberries are allowed to be fumigated upon arrival at the following maritime ports of entry:

  • Long Beach and Los Angeles, California;
  • Wilmington, Delaware;
  • Miami and Port Everglades, Florida;
  • Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (to include ports in the New York City metropolitan area);
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania;
  • Pharr-McAllen, Texas; and
  • Savannah, Georgia.

Fumigation schedules are either the 2lb rate (at 60° or 70° F), in accordance with the methyl bromide label, or the 4lb rate (at 40° F). Due to the high EGVM population in Chile during recent seasons and the unexpected detection of the moth on fresh blueberries, APHIS has determined that these additional requirements are necessary to prevent the entry of EGVM into the United States.

For additional information regarding this Federal Order, please contact Senior Regulatory Policy Specialist Tony Rom¡n at 301-851-2242 or at Juan.A.Roman@aphis.usda.gov.

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Washington Potato Shipments are Underway; Plus Updates on Vidalia Onions and BC Blueberries

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DSCN9805Washington potato shipments for the new season are underway, while Vidalia onion loadings continue.  In British Columbia (BC), blueberry shipments are in peak volume.

Washington state’s potato season got underway in July with some early variety chipping varieties, followed by some colored varieties out of the Yakima Valley.  Then came some early processing spuds, followed by fresh market russets.

Fresh potato acerage in Washington has been stable at about 25,000 acres  for several years now.  Around 70 percent of the state’s potatoes are destined for export markets, comprised mostly of  processed products.   Most of Washington tablestock potatoes are shipped to Canada, Mexico and Taiwan. The state also has red potatoes coming out of the Skagit Valley.

While Washington potato sheds ship russets the year-round, its red, yellow and white potatoes usually are finished by March or April.

Vidalia Onion Shipments

Steady volume with Vidalia onions is expected to continue through Labor Day.  Truck shipments are expected to be very similar to last year’s total volume of 6.2 million 40-pound boxes, coming off of Southeastern Georgia’s nearly 12,000 acres,  As of July 26, there were still about 750,000 40-pound cartons of onions remaining in storage.

Bland Farms of Glennville, GA,  expects to be shipping Vidalia onions out of storage through late August or early September, with a smooth transition expected to Peruvian imports in September. Imported Peruvian onions will continue for the U.S. into early next year.

A little over 200 truck loads per week are being shipped out of the Vidalia district

Vidalia onions – grossing about $3000 to New York City.

BC Blueberry Shipments

British Columbia’s blueberry shipments should peak through August and could last into early September.  In a more normal year, most British Columbia “blues” would be shipped to markets in the Western U.S.  However, with East Coast blueberry volume slashed this year due to weather factors, more BC blueberries will be trucked into the Eastern Time Zone.  However, BC shipments could be off 30 to 50 percent this season due to poor pollination.  As the BC season closes around Labor Day, imports of blueberries from Peru and Argentina will start arriving at U.S. ports.

 

 

 

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What to Look for with Produce Shipments for the Fourth of July

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DSCN9472Wanting to spend the Fourth of July with family and friends instead of on the road?  Here are some of the better opportunities for produce shipments leading up to the celebration of our nation’s 241st celebration of independence.

Avocado Shipments

Avocado loadings will be good, but certainly not great.  When you take Mexico pretty out of the mix, because this time of year shipments are at a seasonal low, you are pretty much left with Southern California, as well as imports from Peru arriving at various ports.  Still there will be 40 to 45 million pounds of avocado across the U.S. being shipped weekly.  We’ll also mention Southern Florida avocado shipments.  Florida’s biggest avocado shipper, Brooks Tropical of Homestead will be having its heaviest loadings in two years.

Blueberry Shipments

New Jersey blueberries will be in peak season, mostly from the Southern part of the state.

If you loaded British Columbia blueberries last season in time for Fourth of July activities that won’t happen this year.  BC  blues are a month later, which is more normal, and shipments won’t get underway until the first week of July.  The region should ship about 170 million pounds this season, lasting into mid September.

Strawberry Shipments

On the West Coast, Mother Nature has been kind to strawberries from the Watsonville area.  Heavy shipments are now occurring and will remain that way through mid July.  There also will be much lighter loadings of raspberries, blueberries and blackberries, which will start hitting stride around the Fourth of July.

Salinas Valley berries and vegetables – grossing abut $7900 to New York City.

Watermelon Shipments

Early season watermelons from Texas have probably been the best quality in a few years and that hopefully will continue with maturing fruit coming on in Oklahoma…..Meanwhile, Northern Florida and Georgia are looking to have a decent amount of shipments, although volume has been heavier in some other years.

Central Florida watermelons – grossing about $2800 to New York City.

Vegetable Shipments

Decent supplies of vegetables are coming out of Southern Georgia.  For example, the Moultrie area is loading items ranging from sweet corn to squash, cabbage and green beans……North Carolina vegetable shipments are ranging from bell peppers, hot peppers and eggplant….Moving to California, the Gilroy area has some of the state’s largest shipments of sweet corn…..The roller coast ride for Salinas Valley head lettuce has continued since last spring.  Shipments should be a little more steady now, with volume better than last year time, but still not heavy.

Southern Georgia vegetable shipments – grossing about $2000 to New York City.

 

 

 

 

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

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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.

Peaches

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.

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Volume Florida Spring Produce Shipments are Just Around the Corner

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SweetCorn+1If great spring weather for growing vegetables, combined with optimism by Florida shippers mean anything, this should be one of the better years in a while for hauling produce from the Sunshine state.

Dozens of mixed vegetables are now being shipped, or will soon get underway.  Similar to the strawberry crop that got an early start this season from the Plant City area (and is now finished), one would think Florida vegetable shipments would follow a similar path of earlier than usual volume.

April and May are typically the heaviest volume months, so we’ll see.  The biggest movers currently are mature green, plum and grape tomatoes averaging over 350 truck loads a week.  Other leading items are cabbage, sweet corn, potatoes (red, white and yellow), bell peppers  and green beans.  Very light volume is with numerous veggies ranging from cucumbers to lettuce, radish, and celery to eggplant.

Keep in mind, Florida isn’t Mexico or California when it comes to volume.  There’s a reason so many multiple pick ups and drops are associated with hauling produce out of Florida.

Spring watermelons are heavy volume in season, but the first melons from Florida will not start until around the middle of April from the Immokalee area.  In fact, most loadings of Florida produce for the next several weeks will occur in Southern and Central areas of the state.

Another significant item is Florida blueberry shipments, which have been increasing in volume in recent years.  “Blues” will be starting in April.

Although Florida doesn’t compare to South Carolina, Georgia, or certainly not California, it does ship peaches as far north as Canada and across the Mississippi River.  Operations such as Florida Sweet Peaches in Arcadia and Florida Classic Growers in Dundee have been expanding.  Peach shipments should get underway in late March and continue through April and possibly early May.

Florida vegetable shipments – grossing about $2400 to Philadelphia.

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A Look at U.S. domestic and Imported Berries

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112_12851Blueberry shipments have definitely hit the big time with increases in plantings on both a domestic and imported basis.  Shipments also remain strong for strawberries and raspberries. Here’s a closer look at shipments for domestic and imported berries.

Fresh blueberry loadings are now occurring virtually the year around whether it is from domestic production or from imports involving other countries.

Native to North America, blueberries are in good volume here from April through October.   Likewise, with farmers in the Southern Hemisphere, the seasonal swap brings blueberries from South America from November through March.

The U.S. is the world’s largest grower and shipper of berries. In 2014, 667.6 million pounds of blueberries were shipped.

However, the U.S. is also a net importer of fresh and frozen blueberries.  Canada supplies nearly 20 percent of fresh product into the U.S., but South America has a very strong U.S. import program.

In 2014, the U.S. imported 234.7 million pounds of fresh blueberries valued at nearly $530.5 million.  Over 60 percent of this product came from Chile, which supplies the U.S. market from mid-November through January.

In 2014 the U.S. imported 124.7 million pounds of fresh blackberries.

Mexico supplied nearly all U.S. imported fresh blackberry volumes, representing a four-year annual average market share of 96 percent from 2011 to 2014.

Strawberry Shipments

While the U.S. is the world’s largest strawberry grower and shipper, it is also a big importer.  In 2014, the nation imported 355.9 million pounds of fresh strawberries.  The majority of all U.S. strawberry imports come from Mexico, with Canada supplying less than one percent.

Mexican strawberries have overlapping shipping seasons with Florida, but typically fresh strawberries from Mexico are only a supplement to the U.S. domestic supply. Most Mexican strawberries being produced and imported to the U.S. are shipped during the winter.

Raspberry Shipments

The U.S. also imports raspberries from October through May, with most imports originating from Mexico, which ships about 96 percent of the total imports.

In 2014, the U.S. imported a total of almost 96.8 million pounds of fresh raspberries from Mexico, Canada and Chile.

 

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North American Blueberry Shipments, and More

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DSCN7611Here’s a round up of North American blueberry shipments that are shifting areas in the coming weeks, plus we take a glimpse at upcoming Quebec apple shipments and western U.S. onions.

Blueberry shipments are making the seasonal shift to new areas and are hitting peak volume from British Columbia, New Jersey and Michigan.

While Georgia  an California blueberries, as well as North Carolina blueberry shipments are nearly finished, Michigan got underway the week of June 27th and is now entering peak shipments.

British Columbia blueberry shipments started a little early this year and loadings are currently heavy.

Typically there’s a gap between Pacific Northwest and British Columbia blueberry shipments, but this year is an exception.  However, Washington state, Oregon and British Columbia are all hitting good volumes at the same time, with peak shipments to hit in mid-July.

British Columbia was in full volume by about June 29 and New Jersey by the week of July 4th, while Michigan is expected to peak by the week of July 11.

New Jersey and Pacific Northwest blueberry shipments will likely start to taper off in the second half of July, when Michigan is expected to take over the lion’s share of blueberry loadings.

Washington state blueberries, and apples – grossing about $4000 to Chicago.

Southern New Jersey blueberries, – grossing about $1900 to Boston.

Quebec Apple Shipments

Quebec apple shipments are expected to get underway the week of September 12th.  Apple loadings for the province’s 2015-16 crop are expected to wind down during the last half of July.

Onion Shipments

Onion shipments from the new crop are expected to get underway during the middle of August from Western Idaho and Mulheur County, OR.  Volume should be up this season as a slight increase in acreage is reported.  Onion shipments typically last through April.  The area is known for its sweet Spanish onions, as well as whites, reds and yellows.

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Shipping Outlook for Cherries, Blueberries, Corn

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DSCN7672Here’s a glimpse of cherry shipments from around the U.S., as well as blueberry loadings from the Northwest.  There also is a final outlook at late season sweet corn shipments from Georgia, and some states that will follow.

Cherry Shipments

U.S. sweet cherry production is projected to be down 6 percent this year.

About 318,000 tons are likely to ship in 2016, down from 338,000 tons in 2015, according to the June 22 Cherry Production report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Production is down this year in both industry leader Washington and in California, which produces the second most sweet cherries, according to the report.  Washington cherry shipments are now hitting a peak, while California cherry shipments are virtually finished for the year.

Washington production is expected to fall from 210,000 tons to 195,000 tons.  Shipments from California, which was hit hard by spring rains, decreased from 68,000 to 60,000 tons.

Production in industry No. 3 Oregon is expected to increase from 41,000 to 42,000 tons. Michigan production also should be up, from 15,900 to 21,000 tons.

Washington cherries – grossing about $5500 to Atlanta.

Blueberry Shipments

Oregon’s 350 growers grow and ship blueberries from 11,000 acres.

Looking at 2016 production, the Beaver State is expecting to break 100 million pounds for the first time.

Washington’s 275 growers in the Evergreen State farm blueberries on 15,000 acres.  The Washington blues harvest ramped up on May 30 in eastern Washington, and production started from Skagit around June 20 with shipments picking up in Whatcom a few days later.

The state’s producers are looking at production of 118 million pounds of blueberries, up from 103 million a year ago.

 

Sweet Corn Shipments

This is the last week of peak shipments of sweet corn out of Georgia.  However, declining volume will be available until mid July.

Corn loadings then switch to Delaware in mid-July, in Ohio about July 20th and in New York about July 25th .  Once Georgia finishes shipping, most of these other area are typically shipped regionally.

Southern Georgia corn, blueberries and vegetables – grossing about $3200 to Boston.

 

 

 

 

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