Weather challenges Mexican grape growers’ schedules

04/19/2013 10:17:00 AM
Cynthia David

Acreage in the newer, further south area of Guaymas also remains constant, he said.

John Pandol, director of special products for Delano, Calif.-based Pandol Bros., predicts the first 10% of the crop may be up to a week late. The midseason also may be two or three days late, but 80% of the crop should be unaffected by weather.

With the roller-coaster weather, getting a read on crop volume and trying to time it right with promotions becomes a challenge, said Josh Leichter, general manager of Fresno, Calif.-based Pacific Trellis Fruit LLC.

There was an upside to Mexico’s cool winter weather, however. Plenty of chill hours between December and February bode well for the health of the vines, which need a dormant period, said Jerry Havel, director of sales and marketing at Nogales, Ariz.-based Fresh Farms.

Supply was tight all through last year’s season, Havel said, and the market was good until the last 10 days of the season, when unexpected volume brought the season too close to the start of the California season.

“This year should be more of a normal crop,” he said, “with good promotable volume, especially in the month of June.”


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