This is an excellent time of year for pineapple grown in Costa Rica. The weather is ideal as this is the dry season in all of our growing areas. The quality is excellent and our yields are at a very high level and this will be a very good time to promote a beautiful tropical fruit during the Winter months. Sizing will be trending towards bigger fruit concentrated mainly in 5’s and 6’s and we are seeing the gold pineapple at our farms with a high exterior shell color and brix levels averaging 14 to 15. On the logistics side, vessel schedules and customs clearings are now back on track after the issues we’ve been experiencing over the past few months.
The import watermelon program has been facing limitations due to poor weather which has effected quality and yields. This is not a long term crop issue but the current conditions will extend through the month of February. As we move to new growing areas in March, we’re expecting more traditional yields and fruit quality should be drastically improved. We will be importing our Mexican production through our McAllen, Texas warehouse during March and April. Looking at our Spring domestic production, we are on track for starting in Florida in mid to late April and should be in full production by the beginning of May.
The imported Peruvian sweet onion program is beginning to wind down and we will be transitioning to our Mexican production that will be crossing into our warehouse in McAllen, Texas. The new crop looks very strong and we’re anticipating good volumes through March and into early April. Looking ahead to the start of our Vidalia Onion season, everything looks very good at the farm level and we’re planning on starting mid to late April with a strong crop.
The domestic sweet potato crop on the East Coast has been greatly affected by the adverse weather conditions over the past few months. Yields are expected to be much lower than normal and demand is exceeding the available supply from the main growing areas in North Carolina and Georgia. We are seeing good quality at our farms in Georgia but available sizing is only with Jumbo’s. Expect tight supplies through the balance of the program.