Market Update For Table Grapes
Week of January 14 – January 20
Typically, by the middle of January the industry would have already received substantial volumes of imported table grapes from Chile and Peru. However, overall arrivals are significantly lower in comparison to previous years with overall supply not able to meet daily demand. With substantial acreage of older poor-performing vineyards pulled from the northern region of Chile and replanted with new varieties, it will take several years to regain the lost production. With California’s record-breaking crop and depressed FOB pricing in the month of December, many South American growers chose to export fruit to other markets in Europe and Asia in hopes of garnering better pricing. Shipments from Ica, Peru are late this season as growers wait for better sugar levels to develop. Substantial volumes of Chilean and Peruvian table grapes are still expected to arrive to the US market, but expectations are for another 10-14 days of light supply.
For the past three weeks overall supplies of imported red seedless have been more plentiful than green seedless, but we expect that trend to reverse in the coming weeks. Overall quality and condition of Peruvian Flames, Crimsons and Allisons have been very good. Movement has been brisk with retail pricing still fairly aggressive, even as overall FOB pricing begins to tick higher. FOB pricing currently ranges from $18-$22 on medium/large, $22-$24 on large and $24-$28 on x-large the spot market showing signs of ticking higher. With the current deficiency of fruit available in the marketplace, some importers are falling down on pre-committed program business. Retailers are having to secure higher-priced fruit on the spot market in order to keep shelves stocked. Expectations are for prices to remain firm through the balance of the month as overall shipments continue to trickle into the market.
Overall green seedless pricing has been strong since the industry made the transition to imported supplies. Peruvian and Chilean volumes are limited and expectations are to see this trend continue through the end of the month. Overall quality and condition of Peruvian Superiors, Arra 15’s and other proprietary green seedless varieties has been very good so far this season. Spot market pricing currently ranges from $24 on medium/large, $26-$28 on large and $28-$32 on x-large. As with red seedless, many retailers are locked in with fairly aggressive green seedless programs with many importers not able to meet their weekly commitments. Look for overall FOB’s to remain at these levels until better volumes begin to arrive by the first week of February.
There are still only limited supplies of imported black seedless available on the east coast. Pricing currently ranges from $26-$30 with the mostly market at $28 on Peruvian black seedless. More volume from Peru is expected by the beginning of February with Chilean supplies not expected until the middle of February. Overall demand has been only lackluster and expectations are to see this market remain at current levels through the balance of the month.