This season’s w. murcott quality should be good with good color and flavor, Mixon said.
“W. murcott shows a great bright orange color, with very powerful flavor, good sugars and good acids with a nice citrus punch,” Greenberg said. “It even shows pale orange on the inside of the peel.”
Mixon expects Seald Sweet to market about 10% more Peruvian w. murcotts because new trees are coming into production, he said.
As with the early-season satsumas, ProCitrus’ w. murcott volume probably will decrease and sizes will be larger, with mostly medium to large fruit, del Castillo said.
In May, Greenberg said he did not yet know what volume to expect this season. More W. Murcott orchards are being planted, so Greenberg said he expects to see increased production over the next few years.
“W. murcotts are highly sought after in other markets,” he said.
Peru has well-established citrus export programs with importers in Canada and European countries, where programs existed before the U.S. began allowing Peruvian citrus imports, Greenberg said.
In addition to w. murcotts and minneolas, Fisher Capespan imports navel oranges and seeded murcott honey tangerines from Peru.
Macias planned to stop marketing honey tangerines a few years ago, but he found a new market for it in the U.S., he said.
“We have found that the U.S. loves this variety, and we are now planting more and more,” he said. “We just can’t get enough of it.”
The murcott honey tangerines are late-season tangerines that are expected to be available from mid-August to late September.
Fisher Capespan focuses its sales of the tangerines on the West Coast, where it has found good distribution, Greenberg said.
Prolan exports La Calera’s honey tangerines to the U.S. in August and September. It also ships some navel oranges and star ruby grapefruit in August and September, but La Calera grows mainly soft citrus.
Navel orange growers in Peru do not focus on the U.S. market because South Africa, Chile and Australia produce good navel oranges that are preferred by U.S. buyers, Greenberg said.
“It eats well and it’s a nice navel orange, but some buyers prefer to stay with traditional suppliers,” Greenberg said.
Navel oranges from Peru will be available in light volumes in about early July, with availability continuing through August.