Bell peppers are a consistent favorite for many consumers. While the likelihood of a pepper purchase fell four percentage points from last year, peppers remain the No. 5 vegetable that shoppers select – a trend that’s held true for three years now. Peppers also rank sixth among items that shoppers say they’re buying now that they had not purchased previously.
What pepper marketers have been doing to get new varieties into the hands and shopping baskets of consumers seems to be working.
Jalapeños, habaneros and other hot peppers are routine to Marlin Bensinger.
Foodservice brings an array of challenges to the pepper business, but it can surpass profits made on the retail side, marketers say.
The pepper category grew slightly in 2012, thanks to a nearly 30% volume jump in sweet peppers outside the standard green and red bells, according to the latest numbers from the Nielsen Perishables Group, West Dundee, Ill.
A strong pepper market was building in late April and early May, following a couple of supply hiccups in winter, grower-shippers and marketers said.
MEXICO CROSSINGS THROUGH NOGALES, ARIZ. — Crossings (133-117-133, field-grown 121-103-111, greenhouse 12-14-22) — Movement expected to decrease seasonally. Trading green fairly active, red moderate. Prices green higher, red lower, others generally unchanged. 1 1/9-bushel cartons green extra-large $12.95-14.95, large $10.95-12.95, medium $8.95-10.95; fair quality extra-large and large $6.95-8.95, medium mostly $6.95; red irregular size fair quality mostly $20.95-22.95. 15-pound cartons red extra-large $15.95-16.95, large $14.95-16.95. Quality and condition variable.
COACHELLA VALLEY, CALIF. — Shipments (51-95-113) — Movement of green expected about the same, red and yellow expected to increase. Trading early active, late very active. Prices organic lower, others higher. 1 1/9-bushel cartons green jumbo and extra-large $17.95-18.95, large $15.95-16.95, medium $12.95-14.95; irregular size fair quality green mostly $10.95, red mostly $26.95. red 15-pound carton extra-large and large $16.95. Organic green 1 1/9-bushel cartons extra-large and large $37.50-42, medium $35, irregular size fair quality $20.95-25; 15-pound cartons extra-large and large $22.50. Quality generally good.
ALL FLORIDA DISTRICTS — Shipments (106-78-103) — Movement expected to decrease as more shippers finish the season. Trading active. Prices higher. Includes palletizing and cooling. Prices 1 1/9-bushel cartons green jumbo and extra-large mostly $20.35-22.35, large mostly $16.35-18.35, medium and irregular size fair quality mostly $14.35-15.35. Quality generally good.