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Agronometrics in Charts: Berry prices fall across the board

Led by strawberries - which in week 33 showed the largest single week decrease in price so far this year - the USDA has reported a decrease across the entire berry category week-onweek.

The strawberry markets have been a wild ride this year, with the market coming down off an incredible high rarely seen this time of year. The high prices of the last couple weeks appear to be closely related to lower volumes than normal from California, but it appears that as volumes are picking up the market is correcting itself.

Strawberry Prices (USD/Kilo) | Non-Organic

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Raspberry prices have been even more volatile than strawberries. Although the commodity is used to seeing strong variability, this year stands out compared to the past four. With record amounts of fruit hitting the market, 2020 has been a rollercoaster ride.

The most recent dip in price comes on the heels of a surge in volume from central California in week 32, who’s production has been around 500 metric tons short of last year's numbers for each of the last four weeks

Raspberry Prices (USD/Kilo) | Non-Organic

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Blackberry prices have also had a tumultuous 2020. With large volumes from Mexico pushing down prices towards the end of the Mexican season, July and August have seen prices recover.

This shift is encouraging especially as volumes have been consistently outpacing last year's production. Week 32, for example, saw over 1m kilograms, the largest volume for this week in the last four years - and about 220,000 kilos more than last year's production.

Blackberry Prices (USD/Kilo) | Non-Organic

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Blueberry prices were able to retain their value the best of the four berry commodities. However, the decrease in price is coming in conjunction with a decrease in volume, which may have some industry observers concerned.

Week 32 is so far being reporting a bit more than 1m kilograms which are down 127,000 kilograms from last week. As volumes for week 33 are not in yet it has yet to be seen what the cause of the stagnation in prices could have been and if this trend will continue.

Blueberry Prices (USD/Kilo) | Non-Organic

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Written by: Colin Fain
Original published in on August 18, 2020 (Link)


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