Organic carrots in Ontario are seeing a solid crop this year. “It’s been a good season for us,” says Markus Pfenning of Pfenning’s Organic Vegetables Inc. “We had decent moisture and the timing of the rain that we got this year was good. It was fairly dry early on in the season, so we irrigated to get our carrots started and then throughout the season we had steady moisture.”
While the overall volume is yet to be determined for the crop, Pfenning says it looks like it’s going to be better than last year and comparable to 2020’s crop.
Consistent carrot demand
As for demand, it’s steady right now given that carrots are a staple product. “Carrots are one of those fall-winter things that people love and around the holidays, people do generally like them more for soups, etc.,” says Pfenning.
Meanwhile, pricing is similar to last year’s at this time, and it’s expected to stay that way for the near future for a variety of reasons. “Especially in Ontario, our minimum wage has gone up significantly more than our carrot prices and there’s pressure on growers right now to not increase prices because food inflation is top of mind,” says Pfenning. “In organics, everything we do takes a lot of labor, and organic carrots are particularly labor intensive. So, there’s a focus on trying to do things more efficiently and adopting new technologies and practices that allow us to do things more efficiently so we can keep our costs down and pass that on to consumers. It’s a challenge a lot of growers are dealing with right now.”