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No slowing down strawberries

Strawberries have ridden strong consumer demand to overcome market challenges all year, so why let a little fire get in the way?

The Salinas area fires are certainly serious business, and they are limited some harvestable hours for strawberry producers, but the season has still been a strong one, and this should be a temporary setback as Central California continues its summer season.

Retail scan data shows berries are one of the strongest fruit categories, with strawberries leading the way.

Strawberries: 2020 Volume: January 1st through August 27th, 2020

From the graph above we can see the 2020 volume comparison between the four regions from January 1st through August 27th, said David Wilson Villasenor, vice president of sales to shippers and growers for Agtools Inc. BB #:355102

Blue Book has teamed with Agtools Inc., the data analytic service for the produce industry, to look at a handful of crops and how they’re adjusting in the market during the pandemic.

California-Central is in blue totaling 1.04 billion pounds, Mexico with 221 million total pounds, California-South with 229 million total pounds and Florida with 212 million pounds, he said. California Central is clearly the leader in production when it comes to 2020.

Strawberries 2020 Shipping Fob prices for Flats 8-1 lb containers: All sizes for Period of January through August 27th, 2020

Villasenor said we can observe in 2020 F.O.B. shipping prices for Strawberries 8-1 pound containers. We can see that the F.O.B. price started in January between $10 and $15 and climbed in February to $20.

In early April prices decreased to $15 and remained constant until late June. In July, the prices increased again between $18-20. August has seen a decrease in prices to $15, but the fires could increase prices as volume and quality could be affected.

Strawberries: At the Mexico City Terminal, for USA Production Exported to Mexico: 2020

Villasenor said we can observe the Mexico City Terminal prices for Ixtapalapa, Mexico City Center imports from the USA. This Terminal is one of the largest wholesale produce centers in the world. Prices ranged between $2.50 and $1.

Terminal Prices can be viewed in the USA and Mexico when using Agtools to see the disparity in prices between the two countries, with Mexico offering significantly lower prices for USA grown strawberries due to lower consumer economic strength, he said.

In production Mexico has surpassed California South, but it is still a far second vs California -Central which is the king in strawberry volume.

Strawberry Volume January 1 through August 20th, 2020

From the table above we can see the total volume for Strawberries from January 1st to August 23rd, 2020 was a total volume of 1.515 billion pounds California-Central with 58.7 percent, California- South with 14.9 percent, Florida with 13.7 percent and Mexico with 12.2 percent of the total, Villasenor said.

Greg Johnson is Director of Media Development for Blue Book Services