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Slightly later start for peak Oxnard strawberry supplies

Overview of the California strawberry supply by Jim Grabowski of WellPict, complemented by charts from Agronometrics

Original published in on March 29, 2021 

Peak strawberry supplies out of California should coincide well with Easter.

“Strawberry supplies are good. Two weeks ago, they were great. But there’s been some rain and cool weather that have slowed things down a little bit. But we’re in good shape at this point in the strawberry season,” says Jim Grabowski of Well•Pict in Watsonville, CA.

He notes that supplies are largely coming out of Oxnard, CA. “Originally Oxnard should have started its peak picks probably a week ago. But this week it should get into its peak supplies,” says Grabowski. “That should go for about a four-week period taking us through to the end of April.”

Volumes (in Lb) of strawberry from California in the US Market
Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Supplementing Easter

Santa Maria, CA also just started with its supplies and will begin their main picks in the next two weeks. “That will be a supplement crop for Easter--Easter should still be a good time for strawberries and supplies will be more than sufficient for the Easter pull,” he says.

Volumes (in Lb) of strawberry from Southern California in the US Market
Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Meanwhile demand continues to be strong for the popular berry. “People are getting out of the winter buying mode. Winter is when they’re heavily buying oranges and bananas and pears and a lot of those types of items,” Grabowski says. “A lot of people look at strawberries as a harbinger of Spring.” He adds that if Easter strawberry sales are strong, demand should continue to be strong through to Mother’s Day.

As for pricing, Grabowski says pricing is typical and steady.

Price (in USD) of strawberry from California in the US Market
Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Meanwhile WellPict is preparing to exhibit at its first in-person trade show, Southern Exposure, since the start of the pandemic. The show takes place April 6-8th in Lake Buena Vista, FL and WellPict can be found at booth #511.

The News in Charts is a collection of stories from the industry complemented by charts from Agronometrics to help better tell their story.

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