Duda Farm Fresh Foods' Rick Alcocer Talks Tight Celery Market

Thu. June 2nd, 2022 - by Lilian Diep

OXNARD, CA - The crunchy, zippy, crispy bite you get from celery is not only refreshing but addicting. With health benefits to boot, I wanted to get in touch with Duda Farm Fresh Foods as the grower is right in the middle of its transition.

Rick Alcocer, Senior Vice President of Fresh Sales, Duda Farm Fresh Foods“We are currently in our mid-year transitioning season, so there is a lot going on! Our Oxnard, California, celery harvest ends in June, and we will be transitioning to Salinas, California,” Rick Alcocer, Senior Vice President of Fresh Sales, tells me. “The Florida crop is finished, and Michigan will begin at the end of June or beginning of July.”

During this late Oxnard season, the grower’s proprietary Dandy® seed varieties excel when most celery varieties get afflicted with bolting or seeders, which is part of the celery plant’s seed development process. One key note about Dandy’s varieties is that they are bred to resist bolting, which doesn’t leave behind a bitter taste.

As Duda Farm Fresh Foods continues with its mid-year transition, its proprietary Dandy® seed varieties are excelling during the late Oxnard season and tight celery market

As seeders are more prevalent this year than last year, yields have dropped. This has reduced the overall volume available in Oxnard. Dandy proprietary seed varieties, on the other hand, are 100 percent harvested without seeders.

Cooler temperatures have also been a major factor in the widespread presence of seeders and contributing to tighter supplies. And with consumers continuing to seek out healthy produce as the weather calls for fresher offerings, demand for celery has remained high.

Dandy varieties are 100 percent harvested without seeders and are bred to resist bolting, which prevents a bitter taste from forming

“The celery market is currently tight. Celery demand exceeds supply as industry available volumes have been impacted by seeder issues and reduced plantings,” explains Rick. “As we continue through the Salinas transition, celery markets will continue to be strong. Cooler than average temperatures in the Salinas area have slowed the development of young celery, and supplies may remain light at the start of the Salinas season.”

Continue checking back with ANUK as we keep an eye on the market conditions and crop transitions.

Duda Farm Fresh Foods