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With demand still high, lemon prices stabilize

Citrus demand has been huge during the pandemic, including lemons.

But prices have stabilized in the past month to a similar level as last year.

A combination of stronger interest in lemons and lower foodservice demand has seen retail sales as much as 30 percent higher than the same time last year.

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA F.O.B. PRICES FOR CONVENTIONAL 165S YELLOW LEMONS.

In the last four months, the F.O.B. price for California conventional 165s has been showing a slight upward trend, from the low $20s to low $30s, said Raul Lopez, agronomist and vice president of 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.

These prices are lower in 2020 than 2019 but show the same tendency. As of late the prices have been steady with a slightly higher price just in these past couple of weeks.

In comparison with 2018, the 2020 prices were similar during the month of May. In 2018 around August prices skyrocketed to $60, while the last two years the August period has been much more affordable.

NEW YORK TERMINAL MARKET PRICE FOR CONVENTIONAL 165S LEMONS

In the case of the New York terminal market, prices show the same behavior as the F.O.B. prices, Lopez said. With a slow upward trend, reaching $44 per case. This market shows small high-lows, but in the same trend.

RETAIL PRICES IN THE NORTHEAST REGION

Prices for consumers also show the same trend in the Northeast region, Lopez said. In 2020, the consumers are paying higher prices than 2019. Last year, this commodity had a very steady price. Lately, there was a big increase in the third week of August, that is not normal, however in general lemons are having higher prices.

Greg Johnson is Director of Media Development for Blue Book Services