“It’s just been a bizarre weather year,” he said.
“We are extremely optimistic going into the season, especially as we have been able for the most part deal with the 16-20 inches of rain in a very compressed period of time. But everything looks healthy and everything has survived the deluge.”
As growers get more into the season, Whittles said he expects plantings to get bunched up and the season will get a little more compressed in terms of time.
Despite the weather troubles, grower-shippers expect strong quality.
“The Georgia-grown products this year should be exceptional,” said Shay Kennedy, co-owner and vice president and sales manager of Tifton-based Georgia Vegetable Co. Inc. “It will have a later start, but buyers should expect to continue loading in Georgia for a longer period of time than in the past.”
Kennedy said the state’s vegetables should maintain their quality even though grower-shippers plan to continue harvesting into July, a little later than normal.