Posts Tagged “DAT”

Tangerine, Mandarin Shipping; Truck Demand, Rates, and Fuel; Plus the Top 10 Potato States

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AA2There will be fewer tangerine and mandarin shipments from the top producing states this season…A look is taken at truck demand, rates and fuel costs…Plus, here is a glimpse at the top 10 potato shipping states.

California is expected to ship 21 million boxes of tangerines and mandarins this season, down from 23.9 million in 2016-17.

Florida is projected to have 860,000 boxes, down from 1.62 million last season, with the dramatic decrease due to the adverse affects of Hurricane Irma.

The Wonderful Co. of Los Angeles and Sun Pacific of Pasadena, CA are two of the larger shippers of the citrus.

Truck Demand and Rates

While demand for refrigerated equipment and qualified drivers has been getting a lot of attention, diesel fuel price are nearly a three-year high, adding the costs of trucking operations.  According to DAT Trendlines diesel fuel nationally average $3.02 per gallon in December 2017, which was 16 percent more than in December 2016.

The Allen Lund Company of LaCanada, CA, like many other companies, have noticed the economy really taking off.  The transportation firm is seeing 280,000 truck loads a year, a 17 percent increase from the previous year.

Another sign things are looking up for the U.S. economy is the increase in Class 8 truck sales.   Over 300,000 Class 8 tractors were sold in 2017.  When those trucks are delivered throughout the coming year, trucking capacity will be better.

The Wall Street Journal recently reported analysts are expecting long-term contract rates which shippers negotiate with carriers should increase between 5 percent and 8 percent this year.

Top 10 Fall Potato Producers for 2017

Total U.S. fall potato crop 399,840,000 cwt.    Total U.S. Crop 441,310,000 cwt.

 

RANK State Production  (hundredweight) Percent of Total 

U.S. Fall Crop

1 Idaho 131,330,000 32.8%
2 Washington 99,000,000 24.8%
3 Wisconsin 29,150,000 7.3%
4 North Dakota 25,160,000 6.3%
5 Colorado 21,530,000 5.4%
6 Oregon 21,400,000 5.4%
7 Minnesota 18,430,000 4.6%
8 Michigan 18,000,000 4.5%
9 Maine 15,040,000 3.8%
10 Nebraska 9,070,000 2.3%
All others 11,750,000 2.9%

Source: USDA-NASS 

2017 Minnesota Crop Production Report 

Fall potato production in Minnesota was 18.4 million hundredweight (cwt.) according to the USDA,  National Agricultural Statistics Service. That is a 9.7 percent increase over 2016.  Planted acres at 46,000 was up 3,000 and harvested acres were up 3,500.

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Mexican Asparagus Entering Arizona; December’s Record Freight Rates

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AA1During the next couple of months Mexican asparagus will be crossing the border at someplace besides Nogales….Also, 2017 closed out the year with some record setting trucking freight rates in the U.S.

Asparagus out of the Mexico’s Caborca region in northern Sonora, Mexico will be crossing the U.S. during February and March.  Volume is expected to increase 15 percent over last year. Quality is reported to be good.

“The weather in the Caborca region has been excellent and pending continued good weather, we anticipate promotable quantities in February and March in a full range of sizes,” said Katiana Valdes of Crystal Valley Foods of Miami in a news release.  The company is a grower/shipper and importer.  Mexican asparagus is imported as product from Peru comes to a seasonal low. The Mexcian “grass” crosses the border into the U.S. through San Luis, AZ, located just south of Yuma.

Yuma vegetables – grossing about $8700 to New York City.

Record December Freight Rates are Reported
According to a press release by DAT, a load board, freight rate and trucking trends company, the average reefer rate for December was $2.46 per mile, 3 cents higher than the November average and another all-time high.  Spot truckload van rates averaged $2.11 per mile nationally, up 4 cents compared to November and the highest monthly average since DAT started tracking freight rates in 2010.

Truckload freight availability in December was cushioned by retail shipments, demand for fresh and frozen foods, and e-commerce fulfillment.  Available truckload freight was 25 percent higher than in December 2016.

However, overall freight volume in December fell 3 percent compared to a strong November, according to the release. Some of the factors in that decline were inclement weather in parts of the U.S and the December 18th electronic logging device mandate.  That combination of strains on equipment and drivers meant that shippers and freight brokers paid premiums for available trucks.

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