Posts Tagged “grapefruit shipments”

FL Fresh Citrus Shipments to Increase with Less Product for Processors

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DSCN0084Florida fresh citrus shipments should increase this season, despite the state’s expected 27 percent plummet in volume from a year ago, according to a USDA estimate in November. This would cut the crop to 50 million boxes.

The primary culprit is Hurricane Irma that hit Florida September 10th.

Florida grapefruit shipments are forecast to be 4.65 million boxes, down 40 percent from last year.  The November forecast in down from the last one issued in October, but many in the Florida citrus industry believe actual harvest numbers will be even lower.

For long haul truckers of refrigerated products, this may not be all bad news.  For example, DLF International Inc. of Vero Beach, FL expects to ship more fruit to the fresh market this season. The company’s October fresh volume doubled over the same period a year ago.  At the same time it will be sending less product to processors.

Florida Classic Growers of Dundee, FL is the marketing arm of the Dundee Citrus Growers Association.   It actually has more citrus than a year ago.  The company has been shipping sunburst tangerines, which should continue into December.   The firm’s grapefruit loadings got underway in early November and should continue into January.  Florida navels and hamlin oranges began in early November, and may last through December. The valencia harvest for the cooperative should start in January and continue into June.

Seald Sweet LLC of Vero Beach is starting valencia shipments earlier than normal to help make up for early and mid-season varieties that had a shorter than usual season.  Seald Sweet, which lost at least 30 percent of its oranges to the hurricane expects to ship a higher percentage of its citrus to the fresh market.

At IMG Citrus Inc. of Vero Beach, 35 percent of its fruit was lost to the storm.  IMG had planned a volume increase prior to the hurricane because of maturing groves and the acquisition of additional acreage.  Following Irma, IMG, sees its shipments declining 10 to 15 percent from a year ago.  The company expects light volumes until the end of the year, but good volume coming with the New Year.

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Florida Citrus Shipments to Have Adequate Volume

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dscn8614There is good news for Florida citrus shipments as adequate volumes on most items are expected this season.

U.S. growers have been harvesting grapefruit and oranges for juices in high volumes while navels and tangerines were hitting the fresh market in limited, but increasing volumes.
The USDA projection for early, midseason and navel varieties in Florida is up 6 percent from October, at 36 million boxes, but down slightly from last season’s final shipments.
Some observers believe Florida citrus volume has finally bottomed out and is getting ready to increase again, although this could take five to 10 years.  It was not indicated, but could this bottoming out be an indication the industry is turning the corner in fight citrus greening, which has been devastating  Florida citrus groves?
Orange Shipments
The USDA has projected 2016-2017 Florida orange shipments  at 72 million boxes, up 3 percent from October.
The USDA forecast of 72 million boxes was down 12 percent from last season’s final shipments.
The forecast of 36 million boxes of Florida valencia oranges for November was the same as the October forecast, down 21 percent from last season’s final volume.
Juice orange volume is expected to be substantially down the latter part of the season.  Florida is expecting could Valencia movement as California’s valencia season has ended and the imported navel season has finished.
Grapefruit Shipments
The Indian River and central Florida citrus regions escaped serious damage from Hurricane Matthew, which rolled along the state’s East Coast in early October.
Florida is predicted to ship 9.6 million cartons — 11 percent lower than last season and the lowest level in 50 years.
There has been a shortage of tangerines, although volume has been increasing in recent weeks.
Coming in our December 5th  post, a look at Florida fall vegetable shipments.
South and Central Florida citrus and vegetables – grossing about $2100 to New York City.

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Fewer National Citrus Shipments Seen This Season

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dscn4665Fewer total U.S. citrus shipments are seen this season from the leading states of Florida, California and Texas.

Florida’s first forecast for citrus shipments reveals a continued decline across all varieties with grapefruit and navel oranges expected to be among the lowest levels in history.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture on October 12th forecast Florida to ship 81 million equivalent cartons of oranges, grapefruit and specialty fruit or tangerines, down from 94.1 million boxes last season.

The Sunshine state is expected to move 70 million 90-pound cartons of oranges with navel oranges amounting 1 million cartons.  Navels are predicted to be three percent lower than last season and the lowest since the 1979-80 season when the USDA began separate navel forecasts.

Regarding grapefruit, Florida should ship 9.6 million 85-pound cartons, down 11 percent from the 2015-16 season and the lowest level in 50 years.  As for tangerines, early season fallglos, midseason sunbursts and later season honeys are forecast to decline as well.

The USDA report forecast 7.5 million boxes of red grapefruit and 2.1 million boxes of white grapefruit.

California Citrus Shipments

California orange loadings are forecast to be down from 54.2 million 80-pound cartons last season to 50.5 million cartons this season.  The state’s grapefruit shipments are forecast to increase from 3.8 million 80-pound cartons last season to 4 million cartons for 2016-17.

Texas Citrus Shipments

Texas orange shipments are seen falling from 1.7 million 85-pound cartons in 2015-16 to 1.4 million cartons this year.  With grapefruit, Texas shipments are forecast to decline from last season’s 4.8 million 80-pound cartons to 4.7 million cartons this season.

25 years ago or so , there were 30 shippers and packers of Texas grapefruit and oranges operating the Rio Grande Valley and shipment citrus across the U.S. as well as exporting.  Today, there are only three shippers.

Worldwide citrus grower are concerned about citrus greening,  the primary reason for the decline in Florida citrus volume.   In Texas,, the crops have not been affected by the disease.  However, observers point out Florida didn’t feel the decline [in volume and tree health] until the sixth year after greening was discovered.   Texas is now entering its sixth since green was discovered in the Lower Rio Grande Valley.  A lot of folks are holding their breath and taking a wait and see attitude.



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A Smorgasbord of Loading Opportunities

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dscn01101Here is a look at a number of different produce loading opportunities from around the United States.

Washington Fruit Shipments

Both of the new crops from apples and pears are increasing in volume from the Yakima and Wenatchee valleys.  Over 2,000 truck load equivalents of apples are being shipped weekly.

Washington fruit – grossing about $4300 to Dallas.

Michigan Apples

Michigan apple shipments are moving in steady volume from week to week, averaging about 250 truck loads — mostly from Western Michigan.

Melon Shipments

Cantaloupe and honeydew loads, primarily from the Westside district in the San Joaquin Valley of California have been very good this year, although a seasonal decline is now underway.  Still, something like 1,000 loads of cantaloupe should be shipped this week.  Meanwhile, the new season harvest has just got underway from Central Arizona for both cantaloupe and honeydew.  The new season from the Yuma should be starting the second week of October.

San Joaquin Valley melons and grapes – grossing about $5100 to Atlanta.

Texas Grapefruit

In South Texas with the fall season, comes grapefruit shipments.  The harvest has just got underway and it will be the last half of October before there are volume loadings.  Literally dozens of different tropical fruits and vegetables from Mexico are crossing into the Lower Rio Grand Valley for distribution mostly to the Midwest and eastern portions of the U.S. and Canada.  However, volume is pretty light on most items.  Mexican limes are averaging about 375 truck loads weekly, while vine ripe tomatoes account for around 500 truck loads per week.

Mexican fruit and vegetables through South Texas – grossing about $3600 to New York City.

Colorado Produce Shipments

San Luis Valley potato loadings are amounting to about 750 truck loads per week.  Northeast Colorado has a sizeable dry onion crop each year.  There is currently very light movement that will be increasing in the weeks ahead.

Colorado potatoes – grossing about $2100 to Chicago.

South Georgia Vegetable Shipments

Harvest has just started, or will get underway shortly for fall vegetables ranging from sweet corn, to cucumbers, greens, bell peppers and squash.  Even when volume kicks in later this month, this is fall volume, and typically involves multiple pick ups.





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A Round up of Florida Produce Loading Opportunities

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DSCN4363Florida produce shipments

Florida isn’t exactly a hot bed  for produce haulers this time of the year, but when you get right down to it, neither is Nogales, the Arizona and California deserts, or many other places.  But here’s what’s happening in Florida, or will be occurring in the weeks and months ahead.

Grapefruit shipments provide some of the best loading opportunities.  It started in October and will continue  through April, although January through March provides the biggest volume.  Florida typically ships 18 to 20 million boxes of grapefruit each season.  Pink grapefruit comprises about 70 percent of the shipments, and Florida remains the world’s largest shipper of commercial grapefruit.

Winter veggies provide light to moderate loading opportunities out of Florida this time of the year.  The state ranks second nationally in bell pepper shipments, which kicked off last October and should be available through June,   Florida is number one in both sweet corn and snap bean shipments., which started in November and should continue through May.  Typically April and May are the top two months for Florida veggies loadings.

Tomato shipments are just coming into decent volume and will be available through the spring.  Loadings are originating from the Palmetto-Ruskin area, as well as Immokalee.  There also is light volume with cherry and grape tomatoes from Central Florida.

Strawberry shipments from the Plant City area provide some of the best Florida hauling opportunities during the winter.  Light volume is under way and good volume will be available in the next week or two.  Shipments will continue into the middle of March.

Florida blueberry shipments have seen dramatic increases in recent years, but won’t be available until March, continuing through May….Likewise, watermelon shipments will start in mid-March and continue to early June.  In fact, Florida is the only state shipping watermelons during much of this time period.

Central and South Florida vegetables and tomatoes – grossing about $2700 to New York City.



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