Supplies of jicama from Mexico are similar to supplies last year at this time.
“We have a great supply of high-quality year-round Jicama. Right now we are in new crop which will show some thinner skinned product and small cosmetic defects,” says Alex Berkley, director of sales for Frieda’s Inc. in Los Alamitos, Ca.
Demand for the root vegetable remains strong in the Western and Southern regions of the U.S. given the populations there have a solid understanding of the product and how to use it, says Berkley. “The market is still developing on the East Coast, especially for fresh-cut jicama,” says Berkley. “You can find fresh-cut jicama in the West and South in every grocery store. On the East Coast, it’s harder to find.”
Change in consumption trends?
Berkley believes consumption trends of jicama will continue to increase thanks, in part, to current dietary trends. “Especially as people continue to find new ways to use it in their diet as a substitute for carbohydrates and as a great addition to snacking alongside carrots and celery,” says Berkley. The biggest development in the category recently has been the introduction of Jicama tortillas which are available at a few retailers in California and Texas as well as some foodservice suppliers.
In terms of price, Jicama markets are relatively consistent in the U.S. “The price goes up when new crop comes in to season and goes down when the product has cured and we move in to ‘old crop,’” adds Berkley.