Reports: Tight Broccoli Market Expected During Thanksgiving Demand; Ippolito International’s Greg Heinz and Gold Coast Packing’s Crystal Chavez Comment
- by Anne Allen
UNITED STATES - Recent United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) pricing reports on both broccoli and broccoli crowns caught ANUK’s eye yesterday morning. We reached out to several folks within the industry to learn more details about the state of the market.
So far, we’ve received answers from Ippolito International and Gold Coast Packing.
“The industry is continuing to see an active market with strong pricing for a few reasons. The most prominent issue was, as the industry was looking to finish Salinas and Santa Maria, California, there were a lot of issues from a quality perspective—such as yellowing and pinrot, drastically affecting yields at the field level and thus overall supplies throughout the industry,” Greg Heinz, Ippolito International’s Broccoli Commodity Manager, explained to me.
The USDA pricing report has the cost of broccoli cartons sitting between $26.95 and $30.75. Twenty lb cartons of loose crown cut broccoli shipping out of Phoenix, Arizona, ranges from $32.50—$36.95 per carton.
Heinz also noted that the product projected to be harvested in Yuma, Arizona, and Mexico was trending behind schedule.
“We also saw quality issues on the front end of the Yuma/Mexico season, thus many growers had to wait for sizing to improve for both broccoli bunch and broccoli crowns. As a result, supplies available at market were less aligned with stronger Thanksgiving demand, which resulted in higher FOBs on both the bunch and crown market,” Heinz commented.
Crystal Chavez, Marketing Coordinator of Gold Coast Packing, also offered her insights on the market.
“Pricing for broccoli has been elevated. Currently, it’s a tight supply and high demand situation for the veg. We believe it stems from several issues. One of those goes back a few months when growers were uncertain on how much to plant. Broccoli growers planted less because they were unsure of the demand stemming from COVID, so less is in the ground,” she reasoned. “Also, the desert is weeks behind for this time of year, as the region saw very hot temperatures during typical planting times, so broccoli plants went in later than usual—pushing everything back. To make the situation even tighter, broccoli out of Mexico has had quality issues. The tight supply market is expected to stay this way for a few weeks.”
As the market shifts, ANUK will continue to cover, so stay tuned!