The week of Aug. 11, about 60% of the avocados being shipped by Santa Paula, Calif.-based Calavo Growers Inc. were from Mexico, about 40% from California, said Rob Wedin, the company’s vice president of sales and fresh marketing.
“It’s a smaller California crop that’s ending a bit early, and there’s a good-sized Mexican off-bloom crop that started early,” Wedin said Aug. 12. “It’s been going for three weeks, and usually it starts now.”
The Giumarra Cos. expects to wrap up its southern California in mid- to late August and its northern deal in early October, said Bruce Dowhan, vice president.
“The current California pricing is firm. It may get better in September,” Dowhan said.
Wedin thinks markets should stay steady as California winds down, which is a good thing.
“We’ll try to increase the volumes but hold prices steady,” he said. “There are some good numbers right now where growers and retailers are making money. The low $30s are profitable for just about everybody.”
Dowhan characterized the Peruvian market as “sporadic,” and said markets were exhibiting a wide range of prices. Peruvian volumes were beginning to fall in August, and Giumarra expected to wrap up its deal in September.
After Labor Day promotions, the California season will be more than 95% done, Wedin said. Calavo expects to have plenty of 48s and 60s out of California for holiday promotions.
“The flavor now is as good as it gets, and sizing is a little smaller than in the general season, which works well for promos,” Wedin said.
Mexican off-bloom sizing was also peaking on 48s and 60s in the first half of August, Wedin said.
Steady volumes on the Mexican off-bloom crop were sending prices down, but not far, Dowhan said.
“We’re in full swing on the flora loca, and the volume is very good,” he said Aug. 12. “Pricing has come down, but it should stay somewhat steady now.”
The regular Mexican crop should begin shipping in late September, with volumes not heavy until about mid-October, Wedin said.
Giumarra should get its first arrivals from Chile at the end of August, Dowhan said. The company expects its Chilean deal to be smaller this season.