Market Minute: Western Weather To Affect Salinas Valley Transition


Weather has been a nasty drawback for crops in some California farming areas. The snowpack alone in the central and southern Nevada mountains is double the normal amount for the year. There is so much accumulated snow that it has caused power failures throughout California mountain neighborhoods, collapsed building roofs, stranded vehicles and closed roads.

We talked to some Salinas, CA, growers and shippers about the status of product and were given some vital information in looking ahead.

The middle of March through the first part of April will be challenging on many items. The early rains prevented plantings from getting in on time and will affect the size, weight and condition of the product at harvesting.

Broccoli and cauliflower will have delayed starts in the Salinas Valley because of the extreme cold temperatures in February.

There will be some gaps but our industry is usually good at filling in those holes. We should have some movement in Salinas once Florida is finished with their vegetable season. This may put some pressure on the procurement side to local product with reasonable costs.

Celery should also be tight through the springtime, especially after Florida is done with that deal.

Oxnard received a lot of rain and many growers missed plantings during the early part of the farming season. Fortunately there is a Huron deal for Iceberg lettuce. This should really help the steady production of Iceberg through the transition period from the desert to the Salinas Valley. There are very few shipping from Huron this spring. Many won’t make the jump from the desert to Salinas or Santa Maria without gaps.

It is advised to keep pace with the transition of product this spring with your suppliers in order that you maintain product for your shoppers on a steady basis.

From The Produce News