A week of historical rains in the east coupled with the western fields also experiencing rains are causing markets of nearly all tomato and other dry vegetables commodities to be higher this week. Quality and shelf-life of product will be suspect until we can work through this product. All of this is occurring during a time that we typically experience a “gap” situation as we transition to fields in Florida and South Georgia. We recommend that inventories be kept as tight as possible as we work through this situation. Most tomato contracts have reached their trigger points and Act of God clauses are in effect. We do not forecast any real relief for the market until the central and southern Florida fields begin to be harvested. We expect the central Florida fields to start yielding product in mid-November and the southern fields to start during the first half of December.
• Rounds- Rain has fallen for nearly two weeks in all growing regions in the east. The grape tomato fields in Beaufort, SC experienced 5 inches of rain in one day. This rain across the region will affect the volume and quality. New fields in Quincy have started but volume remains below average. Local fields continue in the mountains of NC, SC and TN but all fields experienced rain and yields are lighter as those crops are very close to ending and quality is suspect. FOB prices of 5x6s are higher. Delivered prices will also be higher for the 6x6s and 6x7s.
• Romas- Supplies continue to be very tight but romas are one commodity where FOB prices on all sizes are generally steady. Quality continues to be variable.
• Grapes- FOB prices are higher on both bulk and pint flats and we expect supplies to get tighter before new supplies come on line. Quality is becoming more variable.
• Cherries- Supplies continue to be extremely tight as they have been all summer. However, FOB prices are currently steady as demand is weak. Quality is more variable.
• Weather forecast- NC/TN Mountains- Finally, little chance of rain for the rest of this week. Temperature highs will be in the upper 70s and lows will be in the 50s. Turning cooler this weekend. Quincy- Sunny tomorrow but clouds for the rest of the week. Little chance of rain. Highs will be in the mid-80s with lows in the 60s.
• Rounds- Volume and sizing out of CA fields is dropping off dramatically as is the quality out of those fields. Shelf-life is very suspect and it is unlikely that product can be shipped successfully to eastern markets. FOB prices are higher on 5x6s due to decreased supply. Vine ripes continue to cross from Baja and quality remains variable. Vines ripes crossing over at McAllen are light but with better quality. Crossings at Nogales continue this week but volume has still not completely ramped up. There is upward pressure on all FOB prices both in CA and MX.
• Romas- Supplies continue from CA but are extremely tight. Crossings continue at Otay Mesa and McAllen. Volume out of the newer Mexican fields is down by as much as 50% compared to prior years and those fields have experienced rain this week. There is upward pressure on FOB prices on all sizes.
• Grapes- We are still seeing a range in quality and the range is getting wider. FOB prices of the better quality are higher again this week. Inferior product can continue to be purchased at a discount.
• Cherries- Supplies continue to be tight with a wide range of FOB prices depending on quality. FOB prices for quality product are stronger compared to last week.
Green Bell Pepper
East- Most supplies now coming out of GA with a few still available in NC. Rains to both regions will cause quality and shelf-life issues for the next ten days to two weeks. Our Immokalee crop should begin within the next two weeks. FOB prices are steady to higher.
West- Western fields have seen rain this week. Volume continues to decrease as quality becomes more suspect. FOB prices are higher.
East- FOB prices have been on the floor for the past several weeks but have moved up sharply as a result of the rains that have hit the squash fields. We are already seeing quality and shelf-life issues. GA and northern FL fields are main sources in the east. A few still available in NC and SC.
West- FOB prices are down this week as Nogales crossings have increased. We expect FOB prices to continue to fall. Quality is variable but improving.
East- FOB prices are stronger again this week. Like the yellow, quality has been good but the recent rains will cause quality and shelf-life to suffer.
West- FOB prices are steady to lower as volume crossing at Nogales is increasing.
East- FOB prices are generally steady to higher. Both the eastern NC and southern GA fields have experienced rain this week. Quality has been good but will decline due to the rains.
West- FOB prices are steady to lower this week. Quality is variable.
East- FOB prices are up slightly but are still at low levels. Quality is generally good.
West- Supplies have tightened and FOB prices are higher this week. We continue to see some quality issues at crossing points.
West - is experiencing a severe shortage due to hot temperatures. Until Coachella Valley begins in two-three weeks expect beans out of the West to remain tight. East coast supplies remain steady for now, recent heavy rains will challenge quality and pricing.
East- FOB prices are generally steady and quality is generally good.
West- FOB prices steady with upward pressures. Quality is good.