Produce Market News
If you have seen photos of the West Coast lately, you would have seen the red skies. California, Oregon, and Washington have been dealing with poor air quality, and due to the fires and an extreme heat wave, power outages and crop damage. Our friends at Four Seasons Produce report " Truck drivers do have some challenges in navigating into certain regions, and others are less willing to load near wildfire-impacted areas. Due to this, freight rates are up."
We want to take a moment to thank the staff and students at Dickinson College's Farm. The local 80-acre organic farm has produced the most amazing abundant, beautiful, and tasty produce. We have been fortunate to be buying from them almost weekly throughout the summer. Supporting local means pricing can be a bit higher than when you shop at a chain grocery store. However, we know that when we support local, we are supporting our local economy, supporting our local farmers and artisans, and in this case, keep the art of organic farming alive for our community for generations.
Dickinson College Farm also supports the community by donating "thousands of pounds of fresh produce to a local food bank, Project SHARE" as they share on their website. Thank you to all of our customers who, this summer, intentionally purchased our local produce.
Here is what else is going on in the organic produce marketplace (courtesy of Four Seasons Produce) and reports from local farmers.
Apples & Pears: It's apple and pear picking time and we are so happy about reports of great quality and abundant crops. We are picking varieties to share with you each week. Next week look for crisp and slightly-tart Pink Lady Apples and Bartlett Pears. Yum!
Berries: Weather in California and Mexico are adversely effecting crops.Raspberries will be in good supply with great prices, but expect to see shortages and high prices on Blackberries and Strawberries when they are available. Blueberries are in stock, but look for shortages and high prices later in the month.
Broccoli: Continue to expect to see shortages and high prices due to unprecedented demand coupled with leaner crops due to a hot spring/summer. This will remain the same throughout September.
Cauliflower: California cauliflower production has decreased and has seen poor quality. Cauliflower should start coming in mid-month from Quebec to help off-set this issue.
Cucumbers: Local season is coming to an end as we mentioned last week. Next up would be imports from Mexico, but their season is behind and driving up prices due to a short supply. Florida will not be ready with their crop until mid-October. Expect to see shortages and high prices until Florida is able to provide a steady supply.
Green Beans: Pennsylvania will keep us well fed with Green Beans for a few more weeks. Enjoy great looking crops and good prices thanks to our local farmers.
Lettuce: Romaine lettuce is in very short supply due to damage from the weather in North America. We have been trying to source locally, but will need to wait for temperatures to remain cool for local crops to increase to meet demand.
Mango: Mango supplies are disrupted as heat and heavy rain damaged potential crops. Expect out of stocks for an unknown amount of time.
Oranges: Last week we reported that weather issues adversely effected Valencia Oranges and that prices will increase due to crop shortages until Navels are ready in October. Unfortunately, the situation has only gotten worse and there is not much to pick in the fields right now. Expect oranges to be hit or miss until October.
Summer Squash: Cooler weather that came in August has slowed down local zucchini and yellow squash. Florida crops should be available in the coming weeks to supplement supplies.
Tomatoes: We are nearing the end of local season on tomatoes. Watch for a bump in price as local supplies dwindle until Florida is ready for their picking season in a few weeks.