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More organic California table grapes coming on

Supplies of red, green and black organic table grapes are ample coming out of the Bakersfield-Delano region of California.

“All colors of grapes are tasting fantastic and look sharp. We have Flames and Thompsons from Fresno, Ivory and Ruby Rush from Bakersfield, Stella Bella and Red Sparkle from Delano and the coveted Thomcord grapes from Reedley and Concord grapes from Paradise,” says Ethan Abendroth, senior buyer for Earl's Organic Produce.

He notes that California’s season started two to three weeks later and that just this week more available supply is coming on out of that region. “Coachella (California) was pushing grapes for quite a while there so that was covering a bit of a need,” he says.

As for demand, it’s strengthening given summer vacations are starting to wind down and school is starting again in parts of the country. “Demand is moderate and we’ll see higher upticks in velocity soon, especially as the kids get back to school,” Abendroth says.

Left: Ethan Abendroth; right: Thomcord grapes from Reedley, California.

Slightly stronger pricing
This has left pricing as moderate. Right now a 21 lb. export pack is priced at $36.95 while a 12x175 tote is $28 and 19 lb. cellos are $27-$28 (all prices FOB). “Pricing is slightly stronger by about $1 this year which is easily accounted for with the cost of everything being a bit more,” says Abendroth, noting this year he’s hearing more frequently about growers having difficulty accessing labor in some regions more than others.

Looking ahead, the heart of the Bakersfield-Delano grape season is late August into early October. “I anticipate there will be the surge in supply then and that will create that supply-demand equation,” he says. “It looks like it’s going to be a pretty reasonable crop barring any severe heat which is always a possibility. We’ll look to have good supplies through October and we’ll see a little bit of softening of the FOBs with more boxes in the market. However, we are not anticipating any crash in the marketplace.”

For more information:
Susan Simitz
Earl’s Organic Produce
Tel: +1 (415) 824-7419
susans@earlsorganic.com
https://www.earlsorganic.com/