Bondi Produce Market Report August 29th 2023

We are working with our growers to assess the damages to our crops in the Southwest from the impacts of Hurricane Hilary. We currently know some areas were affected more than others and being we are only a couple of days past this storm, it is truly impossible to see the impacts of the rain and wind.

The good news is that we hear fields are drying quickly! Over the short term, we should expect cucumbers, tomatoes, table grapes and chiles to be tight. We will continue speaking with growers in the affected areas daily to get as much information as possible. In general, the grape tomato market is extremely short, and we are seeing pro-rates and shorts. Grape tomatoes are very sensitive to moisture, and they need to be dry and sorted properly or they will not have the legs to ship post-harvest, and this has been a major concern on the east coast.

The west coast will be dealing with the impacts of Hilary, but the overall market is expected to remain short for the next 2-3 weeks at minimum. Hot pepper and tomatillo markets remains very active with Sinaloa completed and Baja running late, but now we need to assess the damages left behind by Hilary. California volume continues to ramp up on hot peppers. Cantaloupe and honeydew production were interrupted slightly by the storm but should get back on track this weekend. We are seeing tight supply on Pineapples and expect this to continue through October.

It only took a bit of excess avocado inventory to see the pricing come down (mostly on the 48s and 60s), and while the industry is still working to absorb the heavier volumes of Week 32, the lighter volumes being harvested now will have their own effect over the next two weeks. The market is still adjusting to several factors, and we expect continued pricing volatility through September on 48s and larger. Smaller sizes continue to be strong, and price points on 60s and smaller are expected to be more stable through September. We are starting to hear reports of the INSV virus in some areas of the Salinas Valley growing areas. At this time, it does not seem to be as severe this year compared to the same time last year, but we are watching it closely and will update as we continue to get reports.