Air-conditioned grocery stores won’t save Americans from price heat on this Independence Day. Prices are up +7.9 percent over the previous week.
The entirety of the United States is feeling inflation fatigue and now the produce industry is joining in. Driven by both decreased domestic supply from the heat in the West and increased holiday demand, prices are lurching upwards.
ProduceIQ Index: $1.09 /pound, +7.9 percent over prior week
Week #25 ending June 25th
Blue Book has teamed with ProduceIQ BB #:368175 to bring the ProduceIQ Index to its readers. The index provides a produce industry price benchmark using 40 top commodities to provide data for decision making.
Though $11.50 per case isn’t an annual high, strawberries did surpass the prior ten years for this week. Excluding the outlier of 2020, prices are typically flat to declining during this time of year.
However, due to unprecedented heat, Californian quality is marginal. Fruit is generally smaller, ripening quickly, and is more easily damaged during the harvesting process.
Growers forecast supply to remain extremely limited throughout July. Will 2020’s price trend have an encore?
Strawberry prices have surpassed the prior 10 years and may continue higher.
Beans are pulling the dry vegetable category upwards. Georgia’s production is winding down as July 4th approaches.
Eastern vegetable prices transition from the stable (and low) prices of the Georgia season to the volatile summer conditions, often impacted by heat and rain. Production regions begin to spread out from North Carolina and Tennessee to Michigan and New Jersey.
The Californian heat wave is weakening domestic bean supply in the West, and Eastern markets are scattered and not quite in full swing. Domestic supply should improve throughout the next couple of weeks as Eastern growers ramp up summer production.
Asparagus prices are up +27 percent over the previous week, setting a new ten-year record for week #25.
Driven by the Michigan crop winding down, low supply from Peruvian growers, and increasing Fourth of July demand, asparagus prices are reaching new heights.
Markets are expected to remain tight for the next two weeks and will gradually come down as more domestic and international supplies become available.
Asparagus spikes as harvested volume declines from all regions.
Cauliflower is another commodity experiencing higher prices due to abnormally high temperatures.
Following a period of unprecedented low prices for cauliflower, damage caused by the heat wave is tightening markets and forcing prices off the floor. Expect the buying market to remain competitive as growers assess damage and faltering supply.
Something to add to your Fourth of July barbeque menu: avocados. Avocado remains steady to declining on quality supply.
After several years at untenable prices, $31 per case seems like a decent deal to promote. Domestic and international supply is plentiful, and demand is forecasted to remain steady as the holiday weekend approaches.
Avocados are poised for stability at moderate price points.
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The ProduceIQ Index is the fresh produce industry’s only shipping point price index. It represents the industry-wide price per pound at the location of packing for domestic produce, and at the port of U.S. entry for imported produce.