Posts Tagged “citrus shipments”
Good volume citrus shipments are expected this season from California and Texas, but the big news could be this may be the year of a turn around for Florida, which has been clobbered in recent years by citrus greening and hurricanes.
Florida citrus shipments may be up a little this year, and that may be a big deal.
The first recently released forecast by the USDA shows a moderate increase in Florida citrus shipments during the 2019-20 season.
The USDA’s first estimate for 2019-20 Florida orange loadings is 74 million boxes, up 3.4 percent from last season. The agency projected Florida grapefruit volume at 4.6 million boxes for the 2019-20 season, up 2 percent from the previous crop. Florida’s combined tangerine and mandarin crop is forecast at 1.05 million boxes, 6 percent higher than a year ago.
“This incremental increase is good news for the industry as we continue to recover from Hurricane Irma and the devastating effects of citrus greening,” Michael Sparks, executive vice president and CEO of Florida Citrus Mutual, said in a news release. “We believe that this number — if it holds throughout the year — will strike a nice balance of getting the processors the oranges they need while firming up prices to the Florida citrus grower.”
Sparks said growers are slowing building output after declines caused by citrus greening disease pressures.
“We are not out of the woods but we are making gains,” Sparks said in the release.
The USDA issues its first estimate in October of each year and revises it monthly during the harvest until the end of the season in July.
“This reflects what we’ve been hearing from growers,” Shannon Shepp, executive director of the Florida Department of Citrus, said in a release. “Florida Citrus is here to stay.”
That sentiment was echoed by Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried.
“Today’s forecast reflects the resilience of Florida’s citrus growers, dedication to the citrus industry, and commitment to innovation in the face of challenges,” Fried said in the release. “Citrus is Florida’s signature crop, and we’re committed to supporting our citrus producers with new research, technology, and techniques to fight the spread of citrus greening.”
California, Texas Shipments
In California, navel orange shipments are predicted to be at 47 million boxes, down 6 percent from last season’s final estimate.
The California valencia orange forecast is 9 million boxes, unchanged from last season. Texas orange Volume is forecast at 2.70 million boxes, up 8 percent from a year ago.
Meanwhile, the combined tangerine and mandarin forecast for California is 23 million boxes, down 12 percent from last season.
Grapefruit loadings in California is forecast at 4.2 million boxes, up a whopping 32 percent compared to last season.
Texas grapefruit shipments are projected at 5.7 million boxes, down 7 percent from last year.
Lemon volume in 2019-20 is forecast at 20 million boxes in California, 12 percent less than last season. Arizona lemon output is pegged at 1.4 million boxes, 4 percent higher than last season.
More favorable weather for growing crops has California fruit shipments looking better than at this time last year.
At Anthony Vineyards of Bakersfield, it should start grape shipments from the Coachella Valley within in the next week, which will continue through June. The grape loadings will be shifting to the San Joaquin Valley, where the vast amount of California grape shipments originate. Another big crop exceeding 110 million boxes is expected.
The California citrus industry has been disappointed overall, mainly due to weather factors. However, summer citrus shipments are now looking more favorable with late season valencias replacing navel oranges. Valencias should be available until the Fourth of July.
Grower/shipper Limoneira Co. of Santa Paula, believes California lemon loadings will be off 10 to 15 percent this year as the season ends this month.
Trinity Fruit Sales Co. In of Fresno notes the California mandarin crop is one of the state’s largest. As a result, product which normally winds down in April will be shipped through May. As the company’s domestic season comes to a close it will be importing mandarins for the first time from Peru, Chile and Uruguay,
Domestic melon shipments should be plentiful this season. Five Crowns Marketing of Brawley, CA has just started loadings of Origami cantalouple and will continue in the desert through June. The company’s Mexican watermelons are now moving in good volume, and continuing through May, before shifting to Arizona.
Westside Produce of Firebaugh, CA is now shipping cantaloupes and honeydews and will continue in good volume into October.
Stone Fruit Shipments
San Joaquin Valley stone fruit shipments are underway and Trinity Fruit of Fresno anticipates one of its biggest crops. Simonia Fruit Co. of Fowler, CA is expressing optimism for its peaches, plums, nectarines and apricots.
California berry shipments were down heading into Easter, however volume is shaping up well for strawberries, blackberries and raspberries from Watsonville and Santa Maria through the summer and well into the fall.
California blueberry shipments should be good through late spring before transitioning to Oregon and British Columbia during the summer months.
Stemilt Growers LLC of Wenatchee, WA just started its California cherry harvest. Last year, California produce only 4 million boxes, but a substantial increase is expected this season.
Eighty percent of the nation’s domestic citrus shipments originate from California and loadings this season look favorable despite more than a month of triple digit heat. Meanwhile, a look at apple shipments in the United States reveal a double digit drop in remaining volume compared to last season.
The state has a $3.3 billion industry with over 3,000 growers farming about 320,000 acres of citrus.
Technically, the California citrus season starts each year at the beginning of October with production and lemon shipments coming out of the Imperial County. The harvest then gradually moves north to the San Joaquin Valley for mandarins and navels. This year’s crop faced 34 consecutive of temperatures well above 100 degrees. This caused citrus trees to kind of shut down, which is expected to result in fruit with a lot more smaller sizes that a year ago. Still, the industry generally believes overall quality will be good. An upside of the hot weather should be better flavor.
California citrus – grossing about $7100 to New York City.
U.S. fresh apples remaining for the 2018-19 shipping season are down 14 percent compared to a year ago. The U.S. Apple Association reports as of November 1st there were 155.5 million cartons remaining in storages. The amount of apple shipments remaining are 11 percent less compared to the five-year average of 130.3 million cartons.
Total Honeycrisp fresh apples still in storage as of November 1st were 11.15 million cartons, up 6 percent from 10.56 million cartons last year and 58 percent higher than two years ago, when 7.06 million cartons of Honeycrisp were in storage.
At the same time, fresh market gala apples remaining in storage totaled 24.4 million cartons, down from 15 pecent at 28.6 million cartons last year and off 6 pecent from two years ago. Fresh market red delicious holdings were 27.6 million cartons on November 1, down 19 percent from 34.1 million cartons a year ago and 29 percent less than holdings of 39 million cartons two years ago.
California’s Kern County citrus shipments are wrapping up, while new crops of vegetables will be starting soon. Meanwhile, California almonds look promising for the upcoming season. Finally, Black Gold Farms once again is shipping Texas potatoes.
For example, Grimmway Farms of Bakers will kick off its new carrot season with loadings of both conventional and organic carrots starting this week. The firms bi-color corn got underway a week or so ago, plus it’s organic potatoes started shipping in late April.
Kern Ridge Growers of Arvin now has carrot shipments, with bell peppers set to start by early June. Dan Andrews Farms of Bakersfield will get underway with watermelons in June, as well as cantaloupe and honeydew in July.
Sun World International is currently shipping grapes out of the Coachella Valley to be followed by Arvin grapes in early July.
Kern County carrots and vegetables – grossing about $6100 to Atlanta.
California Almond Shipments
California’s 2017 almond acreage is estimated at 1.33 million acres, up 7 percent from the 2016 acreage, which had 1.24 million acres. The almond harvest typically begins in August.
Of the total acreage, 1 million acres were bearing and 330,000 acres were non-bearing, with preliminary bearing acreage for 2018 estimated at 1.07 million acres. California has nearly 6,000 almond growers. Five California counties have 73 percent of the total bearing acreage: Kern, Fresno, Stanislaus, Merced and Madera.
The leading almond variety continues to be nonpareil, followed by monterey, butte, carmel and padre.
Texas Potato Shipments
Black Gold Farms, based in Grand Forks, ND is now shipping red potatoes from its operation in Pearsall, Tx. The growing and shipping operation, located Southwest of San Antonio, has been growing red potatoes in Pearsall since 2011, though its potato growing operation there started in 1992 with chipping potatoes,
Black Gold Farms is shipping from its Pearsall facility as well as from its Arbyrd, Mo., facility, with the Texas crop expected to ship through early June, when the Missouri crop will be ready.
Imports of tomatoes by U.S. tomato imports was unchanged in 2017, while Mexico continues to be the dominant supplier, although imports from Canada are increasing….Meanwhile, further plunges in citrus shipments are seen in years ahead.
Total fresh tomato imports in 2017 amounted to $2.177 billion, down 4 percent from 2016. Volume of all U.S. tomato imports came to 1.78 million metric tons, unchanged from 2016..
The USDA reports imports from Mexico accounted for 85 percent of the value ($1.842 billion, down 6 percent from 2016) and 90 percent of the volume (1.612 million metric tons, unchanged from a year ago) of tomato imports.
Canadian Tomatoes Increase
Imported tomatoes by the U.S. from Canada were up both in volume and value. U.S. imports of Canadian tomatoes in 2017 were $312.9 million, up 13 percent from 2016. Volume of Canadian tomatoes shipped to the U.S. was 165,400 metric tons, up 7 percent from 2016. Canada represented 14 percent of the value and 9 percent of the volume of total U.S. tomato imports.
The Dominican Republic and Guatemala shipped lesser tomato volumes to the U.S., together accounting for less than 1 percent of total U.S. tomato imports.
Citrus Decline is Predicted
Noticeable decreases in Florida’s citrus shipments are projected to be an issue for U.S. citrus over the next 10 years, according a new report from the USDA’s long term projections issued in mid-February.
Over the next decade, fruit, tree nuts and vegetable shipments are forecast to increase at a modest 0.6 percent annually, when measured by farm weight.
Citrus, however, will suffer declines in shipments during the next decade, plunging from 17.49 billion pounds in 2018 to 14.04 billion pounds by 2027, a drop of 20 percent.
“While the value of production is expected to grow over the next decade due to higher prices, citrus production continues to decline slowly over the projection period, primarily due to loss of bearing acreage in Florida and the spread of citrus greening, a citrus disease spread by insects for which no cure currently exists,” the USDA report states.
The report said citrus greening has the potential to threaten the “entire citrus industry if not closely monitored.”
The USDA said declines in citrus production are projected to be offset by increases in non-citrus fruit.
The value of U.S. fruit, vegetable and nut production will top $65.8 billion by calendar year 2027, up from nearly $52 billion in 2018. The value of production will grow about 2.7 pecent per year for fruits, nuts and vegetables. Of the total value, fruits contribute nearly 40 percent of the total value, tree nuts 18 percent and vegetables 42 percent.
Overall citrus shipments from the nation’s three leading states are expected to be lower this season for various reasons.
California citrus shipments of navel oranges and lemons will be down this season. It also means lighter than normal loadings towards the end of the season, and perhaps shipments ending sooner than usual.
California is expected to ship 35 million boxes of navel oranges, down 11 percent from the 2016-17 season. While California lemon volume should remain about this same this season at about 20.5 million boxes, it will be lower than normal.
Southern California citrus – grossing about $8000 to New York City.
Florida Citrus Shipments
In Texas, grapefruit has received a lot of interest after Hurricane Irma significantly reduced volume from Florida. Florida will probably ship about 4.65 million boxes of grapefruit, down more than 40 percent from the 2016-17 season. Florida grower-shippers have had a tough time, with Hurricane Irma estimated to have caused at least $760 million in losses to the citrus industry there.
Shipments are down 40 percent to 55 percent depending on grove location. Quality also has been an issue due the hurricane winds that really beat up the fruit, as well as weakening the trees.
Imports from Mexico and Morocco have resulted in Seald Sweet of Vero Beach, FL filling gaps left by Florida citrus, and the company has been bringing imported fruit into its Florida packinghouse.
Duda Farm Fresh Foods of Oviedo, FL reports its orange volume is down an estimated 29 percent, grapefruit off by 65 percent and tangerines and mandarins plunging by 80 percent. Duda’s grapefruit shipments that usually continue into March, ended in early January.
Duda has an import program as well, including clementines from Morocco.
Texas Citrus Shipments
Texas grapefruit shipping estimates have been lowered from 5.3 million boxes to 4.1 million boxes. Shipments are ahead of estimates, with about 56 percent of the overall crop remaining to be shipped, compared to 68 percent the same time in 2017. Loadings by truck, however, should stay strong through the spring.
Lower Rio Grande Valley citrus – grossing about $3400 to Chicago.
Remote container management technology is being introduced by Sealand, providing exporters and importers the ability to monitor conditions of fruits and vegetables from inside the containers in which they are shipped.
SeaLand, Maersk Transport and Logistics division’s regional ocean carrier to the Americas, said in a news release the technology monitors temperature, humidity, oxygen levels and the location and ventilation of the containers in transit, whether on land or at sea.
“Moving fresh produce to and from markets in the Americas is an exciting and important business,” Sealand CEO Craig Mygatt said in the release. “Consumers today want access to fresh produce all year long. We’re making that possible whether it’s bananas and pineapples from Costa Rica and Panama to the U.S. or tropical and exotic fruits such as mangoes.
Porterville Citrus acquires packing operations of LoBue Citrus
Sunkist citrus shipments will increase this season, with a member of the cooperative acquiring another shipper.
Porterville Citrus of Terra Bella, CA is a Sunkist grower who has acquired the packing operations of LoBue Citrus of Lindsay, CA., according to a news release.
Under the terms, the LoBue family will continue to own and operate its 1,000-acre citrus farming operation.
“LoBue Citrus has a rich history in the industry, and we are pleased to be able to help them continue that legacy through our organization,” Jim Phillips, president of Porterville Citrus said. “The purchase also marks further growth for Porterville Citrus, positioning us for a strong season ahead.”
For the 2017-18 season, Porterville Citrus will integrate the LoBue Citrus packing facility in Lindsay into its operations and also add a large portion of the organization’s grower network. That will increase the navel orange, mandarin, lemon and specialty acreage of Porterville Citrus and the Sunkist cooperative as a whole”.
“It’s a great to start the season by adding more high quality volume to our mix,” Russ Hanlin, president and CEO of Sunkist Growers said.
Good supplies of fresh vegetables and citrus is being predicted by observers from the Lower Rio Grande Valley of South Texas as they gear up for the holiday season.
Among the dozens of different vegetables are kale, cilantro and cabbage as well as mustard, collard and turnip greens. As far as citrus is concerned, grapefruit shipments got underway in early November, and several varieties of oranges should be ready by early December.
Vegetable shipper Frontera Produce Ltd., of Edinburg, Texas, began loading cabbage, its biggest vegetable item of the winter, last week. The company started its jalapeno pepper shipments in late October and the product should be available through mid-December, depending upon the weather.
Frontera volume should increase slightly on jalapenos, with shipments on other commodities remaining similar to a year ago. The firm began cilantro shipments the first week of November and will continue until mid-April.
Crescent Fruit & Vegetable LLC is a sister company of Frontera, which will load about the same volume of onions and watermelons as last year.
Another South Texas shipper, Grow Farms Texas LLC, located in Donna, will ship green, red and napa cabbage this winter, along with squash, eggplant, cucumbers and jalapenos and Anaheim chili peppers. Grow Farms will be loading green bell peppers until the first frost.
Rio Fresh Inc., of San Juan, Texas, was shipping about 20 wet vegetables by late October and early November that included herbs, parsley and beets. In early December the company should be shipping specialty vegetables such as bok choy, napa cabbage, leeks and spinach.
Lower Rio Grande Valley citrus acreage for the 2017-18 shipping season should be similar to a year ago when it totaled 27,000 acres, with about 70 percent of this acreage being rio red grapefruit.
Grapefruit acreage in South Texas is expected to increase by 4,000 acres within 12 to 18 months.
South Texas and imported Mexican produce – grossing about $3100 to Chicago.
Summer valencia and other California citrus shipments are underway….Meanwhile, there is less acreage and growers of potatoes in Canada, but volume is maintained.
Navel orange shipments from California are finishing early as valencia orange loadings as will as lemons and other citrus are gearing up.
California primarily ships valencia oranges during the summer months with this season’s crop being moderate size, coming off of about 70,000 acres.
California navel orange shipments will end this month instead of their normal conclusion around the Fourth of July. In fact, navel loadings destined for the East Coast concluded with the beginning of June. California growers shipped 82 million cartons of navels this season, as compared to 94 million cartons in 2016.
Valencias are often referred to as the ‘summer orange’ since peak supplies are available June through September. Higher than usual valencia shipments are seen since navels are ending early.
Fewer California lemon shipments are seen this season. However, more imported lemons are seen coming from Chile, Argentina and South Africa for deliveries throughout North America.
Canadian Potato Shipments
Prince Edward Island continues to reduce its potato acreage, but remains the largest shipper of spuds in the country, according to Statistics Canada’s census of agriculture.
Island farmers planted 83,326 acres in 2016, down from 386,561 acres in 2011, but that was still close to a quarter of all the potato land in Canada. That number has dropped off in recent decades. Until 2005, the province was planting more than 98,842 acres a year.
The second biggest grower was Manitoba, at 67,672 acres.
While the number of acres grown was down just 3.7 per cent, the number of farms reporting was down significantly. In 2011, 300 farms reported potato fields and in 2016 that was down to 247.
That means the average potato farm is getting a lot bigger. In 2011 the average P.E.I. potato farmer put in 289 acres. In 2016 that was up to 338 acres.
Canadian Fruit Shipments
While shipments are not anything near Canadian potatoe shipments, fruit shipments are becoming a larger part of Island agriculture, with blueberry shipments leading the pack.
Acreage of fruit, berries and nuts were up 12 per cent between the two censuses, amounting to 14,388 acres. The huge majority of that, 96.5 per cent of it, was blueberries.
Apples also saw a significant increase, from 126 to 153 acres.
Overall, the number of farms on the Island fell 9.5 per cent, to 1,353.
Citrus shipments from the Florida industry continues to decline, with the loading of oranges dropping another million boxes in the past month.
The USDA reports February 9th that orange growers will ship 70 million 90-pound boxes to market. The season, which peaks during the winter months, had shown some promise in November. At that time industry analysts predicted 72 million boxes.
However, in January, the forecast dipped to 71 million. That is a 14 percent decline from last season’s final Florida orange shipping report.
Valencia production estimates from January to February held even at 35 million boxes, but the prediction for early, mid-season and navel oranges dropped from 36 million to 35 million boxes.
“Today’s forecast reflects a true utilization of early, mid-season, and navel varieties. We hope for higher numbers of valencia production as we continue through the second half of the season,” executive director of the Florida Department of Citrus Shannon Shepp said in a news release.
Oranges make up about 65 percent of Florida citrus trees and fresh loadings account for about 4percent of orange shipments.
Overall production estimates of all oranges, which also includes California and Texas, dropped 1 percent, to 5.35 million tons, from January’s estimate. That is a 10 percent slump from overall shipments a year ago.
Citrus greening, weather and other issues have created challenges for Florida’s citrus production, which accounts for almost half of the total U.S. harvest.
In its February report, the USDA kept California’s orange crop estimates the same at 53 million 80-pound boxes to be shipped, with 44 million boxes of navel, early and mid-season oranges and 9 million boxes of valencias for shipping.
Florida grapefruit estimates remained steady at 9 million 85-pound boxes. California grapefruit production estimates were also the same from January, with 4.1 million 80-pound boxes.
Florida produce shipments, ranging from vegetables to melons, berries and citrus – grossing about $2500 to New York City.