Imported ginger supplies are seeing some transitions in the market and may see even more when it comes to the organic side of the business.
“Right now, there definitely isn’t as much ginger available as there was from Brazil and China,” says Kian Fattahi with Global Farms Enterprises in Los Angeles, Ca. He notes that the Chinese availability has gotten very tight and ginger pricing has increased significantly in the past few days as costs on ginger in China have increased recently.
“The Chinese ginger is also pretty wet when arriving right now and I’ve heard there are some quality issues as well,” adds Fattahi.
Brazil slowing down
Meanwhile Brazil looks to be winding down. “There isn’t as much product being shipped from Brazil right now which tells me they’re getting to the end of the season,” says Fattahi, noting the quality of the Brazilian ginger this season has been good. The country finishes supplying generally in December or early January.
That’s when other countries and domestic suppliers begin their shipments. “Last January, there wasn’t really anything shipped from Hawaii. They had a really bad season,” says Fattahi adding that there are similar issues this coming season. “But Thailand will start and that’s filled in for Hawaii.” Thailand generally ships for six to seven months.
On the organic side of the business, Peru is shipping its organic ginger currently. “There was quite a bit coming through both Miami and L.A. But overall, it’s slowed down now quite a bit as well,” says Fattahi. “We’re hearing that there’s rains in Peru right now that are slowing down how much they’re shipping.”
Peru in fact shipped more organic ginger this season. “Last season, Peru was tight for supplies because they had really bad yields,” says Fattahi. “Then everyone overplants the following season so they’ve definitely been shipping more.”
What may be a game changer for the coming months is the early entrance of Mexican organic ginger, which is shipping by as much as three months earlier than normal. “We feel the consumer prefers Peruvian ginger so it will be interesting to see how this plays out,” says Fattahi, noting that Peru generally begins shipping its more mature volume of ginger in July.
Meanwhile demand overall is starting to pick up for ginger. “It’s not a staple item for Thanksgiving but regardless the numbers do generally go up until into January,” says Fattahi.
As for pricing, the numbers are similar to this time last year but the price is slowly picking up. Organic pricing has also stayed relatively stable.
Looking ahead, it’s the entrance of Mexican organic ginger that Fattahi is watching with interest. “I want to see how the market reacts once the Mexican organic ginger starts shipping,” says Fattahi. “For the most part, those who sell organic ginger don’t really need it right now. We could very well see the price come down on that.”