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Green bean supplies in the US remain acutely short
A shortage of green bean supplies persists in the United States. Growers said weather conditions have been the cause of the shortage. The season began short due to damaged crops from Hurricane Irma, and now many are not planting in the winter due to the fear of further losses from frosts. As a result, production is patchy. The cooler weather in Florida in recent weeks has also contributed to the slowdown in production.
"The season has been very slow lately," said one green bean grower in Florida. "Growers have planted fewer green beans overall this year and we are seeing very light volume. Hurricane Irma did damage some crops in the state, but ours was largely unaffected, apart from not being able to access fields due to the wet ground. Some growers didn't plant because they were concerned about the winter freezes."
He added that production is unlikely to pick up until warmer weather arrives in the spring, prompting plant growth. "Production will remain on and off until it picks up in April," he said. "The warmer weather will result in an increase in volume. In May, our production will move to Georgia for several months until returning to Florida in July."
Prices too high for some
The green bean market has been running very high for several months now and is not looking at easing in the short term. Prices have been high but suppliers said they have eased slightly in the last two weeks because demand had plateaued.
"We've been in a $32 market now for a while," the source said. "This is very high and it's due to the low production combined with plenty of demand. However, prices have been coming down slightly in recent weeks, simply because people are unwilling to pay the high prices. Until supply picks up in the Spring, prices are unlikely to fall much further."
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