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Supply will run for another month

Texas onion prices lower than last year

Onions planted last October have finished their harvest with lots to go around. “It’s been a good season but I think there’s a lot of supply,” said Lois Kim, Vice President of Public Relations at PPC Farms. “Last year the price was much higher.” Where the current market as of the last week of April was $14 for a 50lb mesh bag of onions, she said last year the price was over $18 for the same item. “I think it’s over production.” She also indicated that more growers are putting in more acreage. “Every time there’s more acreage in our area the price goes down.”

The onion market is quite different from Vidalia onions. “Their assessment is about triple of what we pay,” noted Kim. “Vidalia growers pay 13 cents per 40lb cartons while in South Texas, we pay 5 cents per 50lbs. Perhaps the extra investment into market research and promotion allows them to better coordinate their efforts.”

Shift to smaller pack sizes
Kim said they have at least a month’s supply left, maybe longer for the Texas-grown onions and then they’ll import from Mexico. Right now is the middle of peak consumption for their spring onions. “In the past consumers took our onions mainly in 50lb, 40lb, and 25lb bags. Now they’re demanding the onions to be packed in cartons, RPCs and 2, 3, 5 and 10lb consumer packs.”

Rain and hail storms in Texas affected some growers’ onions. Kim said some growers that were affected so heavily were forced to make claims under insurance. “Some people started planting in early October and others were done before the rain hit us.” Over the next few weeks, Kim is hoping the market price rises.

For more information:
Lois Kim
PPC Farms
Tel: 956-580-2525

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