Posts Tagged “California desert shipments”

Coachella Valley Shipments of Grapes, Vegetables to be Mostly Average in Volume

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A19California desert shipments for fresh grapes and vegetables from the Coachella Valley are gearing up.

California’s Coachella Valley grape shipments should get underway in very light volume around May 10th, with loadings to be down only slightly from last season.

Table grapes are grown from 7,000-acres in the area located just east of Palm Springs. Volume should be about 4 to 4.5 million 18-pound cartons, down from about 4.8 million cartons a year ago. While some shipping operation finish earlier than others, some such as Richard Bagdasarian Inc. of Mecca, CA continue through the middle of July.

Early variety grapes in the Coachella Valley will have lighter volume due to inadequate chill hours. However, the midseason or later grapes in the Coachella Valley should have more normal volumes, which should start occurring by the end of May, just in time for shipments for Memorial Day weekend, May 26-28.

From Memorial Day into June Coachella grapes shipments should be at a peak.  Coachella grape volume is miniscule compared to grape shipments from the San Joaquin Valley that will get underway by late June or early July as the Coachella season is winding down.

Vegetable Shipments

Coachella Valley vegetable shipments are expected to be average this season with items such as peppers, watermelons and sweet corn, with good volume during May and June.

Prime Time International, which is headquartered in Coachella, is expecting good shipments of colored red, yellow and orange peppers as well as watermelons and sweet corn during May and June. The Coachella Valley shipping season typically lasts about eight weeks and typically ends when the desert temperatures get too hot.   Coachella watermelon shipments are expected to be heavier than normal this season..

Coachella Valley

The Coachella Valley is a desert valley in Southern California extending approximately 45 miles in Riverside County southeast from the San Bernardino MountainsS to the northern shore of the Salton Sea.  It is approximately 15 miles wide along most of its length, bounded on the west by the San Jacinto Mountains and the Santa Rosa Mountains on the north and east by the Little San Bernardino Mountains.  The San Andres Fault crosses the valley from the Chocolate Mountains in the southeast corner and along the centerline of the Little San Bernardinos. The fault is easily visible along its northern length as a strip of greenery against an otherwise bare mountain.

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California Desert Vegetable Loads are Increasing

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dscn8587While California desert shipments may not be exactly enormous, vegetable loadings are now taking place out of California’s Coachella Valley and the nearby Imperial Valley.

Green bean and bell pepper loadings have been increasing lately as the California winter desert vegetable shipments gear up.  Grower-shippers in the state’s Coachella and Imperial valleys expect adequate volume with mixed vegetables and leafy greens.
Cauliflower shipments will be on a bit of a roller coaster ride bringing back memories of volatility of that crop last summer when it was coming out of Salinas.
Coachella’s Prime Time International was cranking up its green bean loadings prior to Thanksgiving, while its green pepper shipments got started in October.  Green peppers are now being joined by red peppers.  Green bell pepper production in the California desert was already well underway as November began, but red bells were just kicking off November 1st.
In the Imperial Valley, Coastline Family Farms at Brawley has just started harvest of mixed vegetables, with head lettuce kicking off around December 5th.  Starting last week was Pacific International Marketing with conventional spinach in Brawley and El Centro, CA, with organic lettuce and conventional broccoli just now getting underway.
Desert artichoke loadings will begin in late November from Ocean Mist Farms, which is headquartered in Castroville, CA.  Shipments should continue into the second week of March.  The shipper now grows over 30 vegetables in the desert and has doubled its brussels sprouts acreage.  Ocean Mist also for the first time will ship Coachella Valley-grown head lettuce to supplement  its production in Yuma, AZ.  The company started shipping romaine hearts, leafy greens and broccoli in mid November, with cauliflower getting underway right after Thanksgiving.
California’s Imperial Valley and nearby Yuma, AZ – shipments of head, romaine and leaf lettuce, as well as broccoli, cantaloupe and honeydew – grossing about $4900 to Atlanta.

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Desert Vegetable Shipments More Consistent with Favorable Weather

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DSCN4471An extended warm weather streak is occurring in the California and Arizona deserts, resulting in  fair to good movement of vegetables.  The only problem is treacherous winter weather in many northern and northeastern markets is hurting demand.

Desert vegetable shipments are taking place from the Imperial, Coachella and Pal Verde valleys of California, as well as the Yuma area in Arizona.  Everything from head lettuce to romaine, as well as broccoli and cauliflower, and greens are being loaded.  The primary problem might be if there are some temporary shipping gaps due to weather factors earlier in the season….Mexican asparagus volume is building at the Calexico, CA border crossing.

Carrot shipments from the Bakersfield area are averaging over 300 truck loads per week.

While strawberry loadings out of the Oxnard district are light, there is better volume with celery.

California citrus shipments  ranging from oranges to tangerines and mandarins  are available from shippers in Central and Southern California.

California avocado shipments have recently got underway and the forecast calls for loadings to total 327 million pounds during the 2014-15 season, about 10 percent greater than this past season.  Volumes are expected to build into March with ‘promotable’ volume beginning in April.

Overall, this is perhaps the lightest volume time of the year for California produce shipments, which too often results in multiple pick ups to fill the trailer.

California desert shipments – grossing about $4400 to Chicago, $6500 to New York City.

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