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Seasonal perishable products weekly update

Transportation delays impacting national and global supply

Transportation delays continue to adversely impact the national and global supply distribution chains, both at the ports of entry and at points of distribution. Although no major weather events disrupted shipping within the US this week, reported truck availability dropped and the national average price for diesel fuel is again on the rise.

Domestic shippers are finding more limited demand at the high prices they must charge to cover shipping costs for their product. Shipments entering the country through both ports and border crossings face additional challenges. Staffing issues at border crossings are leading to extended wait times before entry is allowed, during which refrigeration units must be kept running continuously to avoid condition issues. A combination of too many empty containers at seaports, lack of available labor, and limited transportation availability are extending backlogs for ships waiting to berth at major US ports, leading to lack of product on markets along with deterioration of the produce if it is held too long.

Mexican avocado crossings through Texas movement expected to increase seasonally. Trading on large fruit (40s-48s) remained fairly active, with other sizes moderate. Prices were higher, keeping demand down despite fairly light supplies. Smaller than average fruits and low dry matter percentages in the Flora Loca crop have led many shippers to wait for the Aventajada crop. Avocados from the South District of California movement is expected to decrease seasonally. Trading was moderate with prices on most sizes generally unchanged, aside from 48s which were slightly higher. Supplies are light as the final weeks of harvest are here. High prices are keeping demand moderate.

Blueberry movement from British Columbia Canada crossing through Northwest Washington is expected to decrease seasonally, with the final shipments expected this weekend. Trading was moderate early and fairly active later at slightly higher prices. Quality is reported as variable, with some shippers reporting arrival rejections. Movement of blueberries from Oregon and Washington is expected to decrease seasonally. Early trading was moderate and very active later at
slightly higher prices as tight supplies of offshore berries have helped strengthen the domestic market. A large portion of current movement is coming out of controlled atmosphere storage.

Quality remains generally good. Michigan blueberry movement is expected to decrease sharply as the season is quickly coming to a close. The remaining supplies are too few hands to establish a market and the last report has been issued. Mexican blueberries crossing through Arizona, California, and Texas movement is expected to increase seasonally, with current supplies in too few hands to establish a market. Quality is reported as variable, and the first F.O.B. price report is expected to be issued the week of October 3. Delays through the Nogales, MX crossing are delaying some shipments and blueberries remain in short supply at some US wholesale markets. Peruvian imports of blueberries arriving through both the Philadelphia and New York City areas and through Southern California movement via boat is expected to increase. Trading was very active at
higher prices.

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