A mid-October hurricane in Mexico could affect early 2012 mango exports to the U.S.

Mexican hurricane could affect 2012 mango suppliesJova, a category two hurricane, made landfall Oct. 12 west of the Mexican port of Manzanillo, bringing heavy rains and 100-mph winds.

Mango trees in the state of Oaxaca suffered 50% first-bloom loss, but it was still too early to gauge the effect on exports to the U.S., which typically begin in February and March, said Bill Vogel, president of Tavilla Sales Co., Los Angeles.

“It bears watching,” Vogel said. “It was just the first bloom.”

Ironically, all that rain could produce a big second bloom in Oaxaca, compensating for the first-bloom losses, Vogel said.

Less than half of Mexican red mango shipments in February and March, and less than a quarter of ataulfo mango shipments, come from Oaxaca, Vogel said.

Steve Yubeta, vice president of sales for Nogales, Ariz.-based Farmer’s Best International LLC, said Oct. 20 that growers were still analyzing possible damage, but early reports were positive.

“As of right now, it shouldn’t affect anything,” he said.

Vogel, Yubeta and Sabine Henry, tropicals manager for Pompano Beach, Fla.-based Central American Produce Inc., had heard of no permanent damage to mango trees from Jova.