This is the prime season for pineapple grown in Costa Rica. Quality and yields are at a very high level and this will be an excellent time to promote for the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday pulls. 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, we are seeing a definite improvement with the vessel schedules as the effects of the labor strikes in Costa Rica have diminished. All indications are that the next two months we will be moving back to normal working conditions at the ports in Limon.
The domestic watermelon season has finished and we have now made the transition to production in Mexico. We’ll be shipping watermelon from our farms in Mexico for the duration of the Fall and through the Winter months until we start the 2019 domestic crop from Florida in April. Currently we are harvesting at our farms in Sonora and shipping through Nogales, Arizona. The crop is off to a strong start with very good quality and sizing and we will be harvesting here through the end of November. For the December through March time period, we will transition to our farms located in Nayarit, Jalisco, Campeche, Oaxaca, Yucatan, and Tamaulipas. From these growing areas, we will have consistent weekly volumes available in both cartons and bins loading at our warehouse in McAllen, Texas.
The imported Peruvian sweet onion program is in full production and the field forecast through the holidays is for excellent quality and very good yields. We will have available a full range of sizes and pack styles for the heavy Thanksgiving and Christmas demand. Our sweet onions will be arriving to ports in Georgia and California and the season will go through February.
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 key holiday time periods.