“It’s been a good year. We didn’t have the gap that we had last year,” says Allison Bennett with organic foodservice distributor Ace Natural Inc. in Long Island City, NY, noting the gap was between the Mexican supply season and the California supply.
“Right now the Mexican supply is winding up. It was decent and we’re moving into Southern California supply.” This year’s supply crossover has been seamless, she adds.
Bennett believes the California crop looks strong, particularly in quality. “It’s got good color, good flavor and even the Choice lemons which we buy for our juicers, the juicing-grade lemons are almost retail quality,” she says. “That’s how good they look. And there’s a good supply of them so prices are good.”
Matching that strong incoming supply is an equally strong demand. “We’re going into citrus season and even though we’re saying goodbye to our lemonade stands, we see people loading up on them to ward off colds and flues,” says Bennett. “So we don’t have a problem with losing a bunch of summer sales because they get replaced by a different kind of demand in the winter time.”
And after a shorter term spike in prices in lemons in September, the prices have come back down to more traditional pricing levels. “They were up but they’re not what they should be,” says Bennett. “Prices are going to hang around the $40 FOB range for us.”
Looking ahead, Bennett anticipates a steady lemon season. “Lemons aren’t something we worry about,” she says. “It’s going to be a constant supply with no spikes or drops. People always need them and use them.”
For more information:
Ace Natural Inc.
Tel: +1 (718)784-6000