“Our asparagus seems to be selling itself.”
As for this year’s crop, Schreiber predicted a normal start around April 8, providing the weather cooperates.
After two years of challenging weather during harvest, he said he’d be grateful for an uneventful year.
Schreiber said in an e-mail from China that supermarkets in the country’s major cities are full of domestically produced asparagus.
“It’s very well packaged in 100-gram containers,” he said, “something like 3-ounce bundles.”
He also found asparagus on restaurant and hotel menus.
“China has turned into an asparagus-consuming country,” he said.
After two weeks of suntan weather in March followed by a cold snap, the fate of Ontario’s emerging asparagus remains unclear.
“We’ve heard that if the good weather stays, some growers may be shipping the weeks of April 16th or 23rd, said Marvin Karges, executive director of the Simcoe-based Ontario Asparagus Growers’ Marketing Board.
“Normally, we try to get it for Mother’s Day,” said Karges.
Along with the challenge of flying in labor from Mexico and the Caribbean early, he said large retailers may be unwilling to interrupt imports to accept Ontario product, knowing supply could be interrupted by bad weather.
“It’s a challenge for everyone,” he said. “Some growers may just try to stick to their regular schedule.”