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Broccoli sees price spike

Broccoli prices are on the rise thanks to heatwaves and wildfires limiting volume, but otherwise, the vegetable is having a strong 2020.

TOTAL MARKET VOLUME FROM MARCH 23RD THROUGH SEPTEMBER 22ND 2020 FOR CONVENTIONAL BROCCOLI.

Week by week, this year has performed strong over 2019 and 2018, 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.

With a downward trend across this period due to seasonality, September will be the month with the lowest volume. Traditionally, this trend turns around during the autumn months.

BROCCOLI VOLUME FOR LAST QUARTER OF 2019

In the past three years, starting October, the trend goes upward, peaking in mid-December, he said. Based on trends and growth during 2020, it is expected that this market will continue to grow for the rest of the year.

F.O.B. PRICE FOR CONVENTIONAL BUNCHED BROCCOLI FROM CALIFORNIA SIZE 18,S FROM MARCH THROUGH SEPTEMBER 2020

In the last 180 days, the market was steady, except for a big increase during June, Lopez said. This was caused by an increase in temperature during last days of May that affected the condition of leafy items and broccoli.

After the heat was gone, the prices returned to normal, but heat and wildfires are hurting volume which is causing prices to rise.

F.O.B. PRICE BEHAVIOR IN THE LAST QUARTER OF 2019 FOR CONVENTIONAL SALINAS-WATSONVILLE BUNCHED BROCCOLI SIZE 18S

During the autumn of 2019, the F.O.B. price was very steady, with no surprises, only with a downward trend in November due to the end of the season, when the product form Mexico starts increasing its volume, Lopez said.

TERMINAL MARKET PRICE IN LOS ANGELES FOR CALIFORNIA CONVENTIONAL BUNCHED BROCCOLI SIZE 18S FROM MARCH 23RD THROUGH SEPTEMBRER 22ND 2020

In the Los Angeles market, the price traditionally is very steady, he said. The current year has also been very flat. Even though the volume has increased 20 percent, the prices remained with no changes, which has been beneficial for the market.

TERMINAL MARKET PRICE IN LOS ANGELES FOR CALIFORNIA CONVENTIONAL BUNCHED BROCCOLI SIZE 18S FROM OCTOBER 1ST THROUGH DECEMBER 31ST 2019

In the last quarter of 2019, the price increased in October up to $34, as Thanksgiving approached. After that day and to the end of the California season, the prices dropped fast below $20.

The broccoli market has become highly active during the summer. In the last 180 days, the market has grown 20 percent vs. 2019. During this period, the volume reached almost 536,000 pounds. The main supplying regions are California central and Mexico.

Regarding market share, California central holds more than 57 percent and Mexico almost 39 percent, Lopez said. Between these two regions they supply 96 percent of the market during this past spring/summer season.

California central growth was more than 11 percent and Mexico 44 percent. Guatemala is the third player with 16 percent of growth vs. 2019. Total market grew more than 20 percent despite the lockdown and pandemic effect.

Greg Johnson is Director of Media Development for Blue Book Services