WEEKLY SPECIALS | SEASONAL CALENDAR | GROWER MAP

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Archive for January, 2013

Severe Cold Snap Update

By now everyone knows that most agricultural areas in California, Arizona and Northern Mexico have been under a severe cold snap.

Though it is going to slowly warm up there are some long term effects worth consideration:

#1 Prices will continue to stay high until the supply side stabilizes. Most of the US is pulling produce from the same area that we do at this point in the season. Demand is great – supply isn’t.  To see one of the last true examples of a supply and demand economic model look no further than the fruit and veg industry. There are no price supports, no subsidies and you can charge as little as you want or as much as you want. It either sells or it doesn’t so to speak.  In organics because it is a smaller industry prices are even more reactive in a time like this. So expect to continue for at least a few weeks to see very high prices on all cool season wet veg.  Warm weather crops will also be high though but because many of these are greenhouse/hothouse grown the supply side has not been affected as much as the field grown crops.

#2 Unfortunately price and quality do not track side by side. Often higher prices reflect difficult growing conditions ( like now) and veg have more cosmetic challenges than we are used to. Repeated frost leads to tip burn on leafy veg, epidural peel on the outside of leaves and stunts growth.  Remember most veg are mostly water and water when it freezes expands.  At one end of the spectrum the cell wall bursts and the plant turn black and dies, AKA the dreaded killing frost.  At the other end of the spectrum there is a slow deterioration of the leaves leading to a kind of listless dull appearance and a general rough look.

#3 When the ground gets real cold and/or freezes planting/transplanting is hard or delayed as is the germination of seeds.  Down the line in about 40-60 days we will start to see the gaps in supply caused by the planting challenges of today.

 

As always check back for updates on our website, Facebook and Twitter.

Minneolas

The Minneola tangelo is a cross between a Duncan grapefruit and a Dancy tangerine.  They have thin reddish orange skin that is easy to peel and the shape is like a bell.  The fruit combines the sweetness of the mandarin with the tart flavors of the grapefruit, and it is highly prized for its juiciness and combination of sweet/sour flavors.  Right now the flavors are amazing and they are on special this week!

 

Cold Weather Weekend Update

 

Cold weather event will start tonight and will last 3-4 days in the California coast and deserts, Arizona  and Northern Mexico. The supply side is very unstable  and some growers will probably stay out of the fields for a few days entirely.

Prices have still not reached their highs.

With this in mind we are pulling very strongly this weekend out of all southern and coastal regions of California and Arizona as well as out of Nogales in an attempt to secure an adequate supply on veg and to stay a bit ahead of the daily price increases on most wet veg items.

This could turn out to just be a relatively normal cold snap which happens every year or something of a more “historic” nature. We will see.

Historic Low Winter Temperatures

 

We are expecting historic low temperatures this week in the California desert and Northern Mexico. We expect there will be damage to wet and warm weather vegetables.  We will not know the full extent until next week. Supply size will continue to be tight and prices will be based on supply and demand.  Expect prices to remain high.

One thing to remember is that during the winter the entire United States is pulling vegetables from the same area which limits the quantities available. The reality is that it is winter and the weather affects not only the regions where produce can be grown but the quantity and quality of what is available.  We don’t know where it is going but we are doing our best to mitigate this unfortunate weather related situation. Keep checking back for updates!

If you missed our posting last week about the cold weather here it is again.

We are just passing through the shortest days of the year which means less sun, slowing down the growth of everything. It has been very cold in the California desert with morning frosts which makes it hard to harvest early in the morning because plants can be damaged severely before they thaw out. Most of the wet vegetable items that are grown in the desert can take quite low temperatures and will recover even when frozen.

This translates to short harvest days and leads to light volumes and high prices. We can expect to see dramatically higher prices for lettuce, spinach and green onions next week with broccoli, cauliflower and other leafy greens to follow.

Late Crop California Hass Update

We are offering California Hass late crop avocados which are very high in oil content.  Do not let ripen soft, instead eat them firm.  They are outstanding and the Mexican crop pales in comparison. Take care when choosing avocados at the store and make sure you know what you are getting. There are not a lot of California avocados around.

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