UNITED STATES – It’s a tight mango market, but relief may be on the way. Freska’s Gary Clevenger and Vision Produce’s Jesse Sepulveda weigh in.
“The weather that occurred during the flowering process in Peru delayed the harvest and caused some of the fruit to fall,” Gary tells me. “We are seeing between 30-40% less than last year.”
The unusual weather hit Peru during the flowering process, which is when the fruit is the most susceptible. This has created a void in the transition from Ecuador to Peru, which has not been the case in previous years.
Gary says that volume started coming in around December, but that it has been very light. With this limited supply, prices have been on the rise.
Jesse agrees, telling me that the lower-than-usual volumes coming from both Peru and Ecuador have increased prices. He also added that congestion at the West Coast ports could be helping to drive the prices up.
On January 21, the USDA reported prices for 1-layer flats of Kents 8-10s from Peru between $11-12.50. This is well over the $6-8 for the same date in 2014.
“Pricing is way up over last year. I foresee it staying up until we begin harvesting in Mexico. Luckily we will start that move next week when we start Ataulfo,” Gary noted.
After the Ataulfos arrive in Nogales, Freska is looking to start with Reds around the week of February 15.
“Volumes will most likely remain light until mid-March – April, but then we will have a lot more,” Gary added.
Vision Produce will also be making the move into Mexico. “We are expecting strong volumes out of Mexico this year. Last year started slightly late and saw lower than average volume, but that is not the case this year,” Steve tells me.
He added that Vision will have Ataulfo in February and Tommys available in mid-March.
For now, however, it appears that mango volumes will remain light. Stay tuned to AndNowUKnow as we continue to track the mango market.