Labor Day corn, watermelon to be in ample supply

07/31/2013 01:38:00 PM
Doug Ohlemeier

Smith said Missouri and North Carolina should finish shipments by Labor Day and said retailers should remain dependent on Indiana, Maryland, Delaware as well as production in Michigan and Canada.

In late July, he quoted 18-19 cents a pound, higher than the typical 14-18 cents per pound.

The USDA in late July reported these per-pound prices for 24 inch bins: 15-16 cents for red seeded 35s while seedless size 45s and 60s were fetching 18-19 cents, up from 15-16 cents a week earlier for the 45s.

The USDA reported growers curtailed harvesting in several Texas growing regions July 14-20 because of rain and wet fields.

For Texas, the agency reported 24-inch bin per-pound red seedless 35s selling for 16-18 cents with 45s garnering 18 cents, the same as the previous week.

Retail promotions

Tommy Wilkins, director of produce procurement for United Supermarkets LLC, Lubbock, Texas, said he expects strong Labor Day corn and watermelon supplies.

The west Texas watermelon deal began three weeks later than normal, which made it difficult for July 4 promotions, but Wilkins said he expects the later volume to produce a strong Labor Day run.

He described quality as strong and seedless quality as “phenomenal.”

On corn, Wilkins said the Colorado corn United switched to from Texas in mid-July looks well.

“Unless Mother Nature throws us a curve, it’s just a beautiful set-up we have for Labor Day,” he said in late July. “There will be good supplies and we are excited about the opportunities for corn. On watermelon, it’s lining up to be a fun time and good for the consumer.”


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