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Greenhouse cucumber production ramping up in Mexico
With the arrival of summer bringing warmer temperatures and favorable growing conditions in Mexico, greenhouse cucumber production is quickly ramping up with good volume expected. A snow storm earlier this year had damaged the crops in Central Mexico, however the team at Terra Bella Farms has managed to fully recover from these losses and are looking forward to a busy season over the next few months.
"The snow storm early this year put a damper on things, but now cucumber production is back in full swing," said Janell Dykstra of Terra Bella Farms. "It's quite dependent on Mother Nature, but typically we see higher production during the summer months. Our greenhouses are located in Central Mexico and we do have cucumbers available all year round. We moderate supply based on how much Canada is producing in order to maintain a steady supply for our customers as well as to try and keep the market at a stable level."
Currently, though, prices are lower than they were at this point last year. "The market price is considerably lower than it was last year," Dyktra noted. "We are seeing that across both conventional and organic categories."
Organic Persian cucumbers
Persian mini, slicer, and English cucumber all in production
All of the main varieties of cucumber are in production right now, with offerings on both conventional and organic product. Terra Bella Farms grows them for different markets, with each sector having a purpose for them.
"We have the Persian mini in both organic and conventional, as well as different categories," Dykstra said. "Extra fancy have a diameter of 1" to 1.25" with a length of 5" to 6", while Fancy have the same diameter but are a little longer at 6.5". They have a sweet flavor, with a uniform and smooth skin. These do not have a PLU as they are often used to place in water or for pickling for example."
"We only grow the slicer cucumbers organically," she continued. "Slicer cucumbers are 8" - 12" in length, they are dark green and have PLU stickers. They are seeing strong demand currently as we have just emerged from a gap in supply. The English cucumbers are the other variety we carry and they are also grown organically. These are individually wrapped and have a firm and smooth texture, but remain flexible. English cucumbers are typically 12" to 14" in length."
Each have their own markets
Growers have observed that the different types of cucumbers tend to have distinct consumer followings. Overall growth in the cucumber market remains steady and according to Terra Bella Farms, consumers take note of the health properties when considering purchasing cucumbers.
"Persian mini cucumbers are very popular in areas with a larger Asian demographic," Dyktra observed. "The use of clamshells for Persian minis is becoming more common and it is the choice of packaging that we offer."
"Cucumbers are a perfect blend of both fiber and water and they help to protect the body from ailments such as kidney stones," she added. "A majority of people prefer to have a cucumber rich salad, as it is a great way to increase their daily fiber intake. Cucumbers are extremely beneficial for your overall health, especially during the summer months since they are mostly made of water. They contain important nutrients that are essential for the human body. Cucumber juice (or cucumber water) has the silica content for healthier and brighter skin."
For more information:
Terra Bella Farms
Tel: +1 (661) 858-2585
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