State of the Avocado –  Market Update Release Notes

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December 2020

In the short-term, the overall market will continue to be weak. California will get some fruit going for the big game in early February, but it will be limited to light harvests. We should see a stronger presence in the market by the first of March.

For Mexico, the holidays align this year so that limited harvesting will occur going into game day. This will create a market shortfall in early January, but with harvest rates increasing, it should overcome any harvest interruptions caused by the holidays. We should see good pricing for good retail advertising through the big game and into the early spring.

November 2020

Avocado supply and quality are very good, whereas demand is moderate, and the overall market is weak. These conditions will likely continue until the Christmas and New Year holidays in Mexico. However, the holiday halt to picking will firm up the market heading into the big game’s heavy demand in early February.

Currently, Mexico is transitioning between its Loca crop into the Aventejada and normal crops. Usually, this transition sees a drop in sizing with more 60s and 70s and tightens up with 48 and larger markets. With a weak overall market, this drop will be short-lived or unseen. In the meantime, the next two months are ripe for advertising.

September – October 2020

The Peruvian and California seasons are wrapping up and Mexico will be the only country of origin for the next few months. Chile has a smaller crop this year and the market in Europe is very strong so they will come in with little to no volume this year.   Mexico has good volume of the Loca Crop (first crop) and 15% more than last season is expected.  This should mean great retail price points for the winter period and high volumes out of Mexico.  Sizing is focused on 48s and larger with premiums getting paid for 60 and smaller-sized fruit. Colombia will have very little to no fruit entering the market due to high pricing in the European market.

August 2020

After the upcoming holiday weekend, Peru and California should be out of the market in any sizable volume. Currently, Mexico’s Loca crop is about 15% bigger than last year. We are a little delayed on the harvest of the Mexican crop due to a weak market and a hangover of the old crop from the year before. Moving forward, Mexico has strong volumes for the fall, and good retail action should be expected. In other sourcing news, Colombia will start to have some arrivals in volume for the October – January time period, depending on the European market conditions. However, affected by drought and water issues, Chile will likely focus their efforts in Europe, even more, this year.

July 2020
Mexico is just beginning its Loca crop, which is poised to be a big one with about 15% more fruit than the previous year. With the lack of rains and a heavy set, the fruit from down south will trend smaller. Expect very little to no 40s and larger, so pricing will be tight until we get into higher elevations in October, or into the next crop (Aventajada) with some rain. Overall, promotability on 48s and larger should be good into the late summer. California will have about three weeks of strong harvest and then will begin to slow down. Retailers will need to look at Lamb Hass to get the sizing that Mexico lacks in the 32/36/40 sizing. Peru will continue to arrive strong into the U.S. through August. Still, with California slowing down and Mexico slow to start on the Loca, the market will strengthen until Mexico’s dry matter allows it to harvest in volume.

June 2020

Heavy volumes in the market are spilling over from June into July, with four countries of origin set to arrive mid-summer. California, Peru, and Mexico will maintain good volumes through both months, which should weaken the market with oversupply. Hopefully, with a good July 4th, and the market and the economy opening, the industry can successfully move the inventory.

May 2020

Despite the current situation globally, retailers had a robust demand for avocados for May, including the Cinco de Mayo and Memorial Day sales. However, as we head into June, the market will wane because of California and Mexico’s high harvest, coinciding with the first Peruvian arrivals. The summer months will heat up with a good supply, and retailers should feel at ease advertising during this period. Starting in July, the Flora Loca crop in Mexico is anticipated to hit above 500 million pounds, so market interruptions though the summer into the fall should be limited.

April 2020

The late spring and into summer are prime for marketing avocados. Thanks to strong supplies in Mexico and California, and an upcoming bumper crop in Peru, we’ll have a wonderfully competitive summer ahead of us. California has started strong after some much-needed rain in March and April. And, with only 75 million pounds harvested so far, the golden state will need to pick strong to finish by the end of the summer. Mexico is behind on its crop due to a lull in demand because of COVID-19. However, the demand seems to be returning stronger in some sectors that were walloped by the virus. Without any more interruptions from rain, we see a market primed and ready to move some avocados!

March 2020

With spring upon us, expect a drop in volume for fruit out of Mexico as the crop will be winding down during April, May, and June. Because of a rainy March, fewer California growers are harvesting, but in April, we anticipate better weather and increased harvesting throughout the month. California growers are still waiting for the sizing to improve. The crop is currently heavy to smaller sizes. We expect April’s warmer weather to help bring on improved sizing. In past years, consumer demand in April has been very strong; however, at this time, it is less clear due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and the effect it will have on consumers’ purchases of avocados. 

Food safety is front and center on all growers’ radar, as they are in compliance with federally-mandated safety programs. West Pak and all growers also follow all Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), Good Handling Practices (GHP), and step up measures as needed to verify that our fruit is produced, packed, handled, and stored appropriately to minimize the risks of microbial food safety hazards.

February 2020  

For big game Sunday, there was a robust pull out of Mexico with nearly 1700 loads harvested for three weeks straight. However, the volume fell just shy of demand. Moving forward, the avo market from down south will continue with healthy harvests for the next two months. As we move into sourcing from the higher elevations, expect good eating quality and larger sizing. The California season is just starting to ramp up. Anticipate light harvests through February that will strengthen as we head into March. The sizing will lean toward 48s and 60s due to the number of avocados on the trees while the quality of the golden state fruit will remain stellar.

January 2020

According to our experts, there’s heavy harvesting with 14 to 16 hundred loads a week out of Mexico leading up to Super Bowl – the biggest avocado event in the world. That amount will trail off slightly after gameday, but strong volumes from south of the border will last for the rest of February and into March. January 16th saw the release of all sizes of California avocados. Heavy to export markets through February, the region will realize more volume of excellent quality fruit within Western markets in March, which will carry through as long as September. All great news for an avo-hungry market!

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