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Mild winter keeps western US spinach production strong

Spinach production in the United States remains strong thanks to mild weather so far during the winter months. Temperatures have remained above average with very little in the way of cold weather. This has ensured good growing conditions and growers are seeing a steady supply, with expectations for that to continue in the foreseeable future. 

Dave Johnson, of Gold Coast Pack, said the company grows spinach in the desert regions in order to take advantage of the milder Winters in those areas. "Our spinach production has just moved to the Yuma/El Centro desert region for the winter months," he said. "This takes over from the Santa Maria season which continues through to December. This is due to past experiences with cooler and wetter weather typical of other California growing regions during the Winter."

"It has been slightly warmer than normal," Johnson continued. "Usually, we see some Arctic cold air dipping into the south occasionally, but this year they seem to have been cut off. Temperatures have been stable in the 70s and 80s which has been good for spinach production. As a result, we have had no issues in meeting expected production volumes." 

Market steady
With spinach in generally good supply, the market is proving to be steady thanks to good demand and reliable product quality. Johnson noted that the bunch market on spinach is stronger, while processed remains close to the average. 

"The bunched market is currently sitting around the $14 mark, which is fairly firm," he said. "The processed market is steady and we have had no issues with pricing in that area. Quality on the spinach is looking good."

Growers are expecting the spinach market to remain good as long as conditions remain the same. Weather as always remains a factor, but Johnson said that the forecast is looking favorable, and once the end of January arrives, weather conditions are no longer expected to present any potential problems. 

"We have entered January on a high note and there is not expected to be any issues in the coming weeks," he said. "Labor and weather present a variable, however at this stage, things are looking good. In terms of weather, once we reach the end of January, we have generally passed the stage when frosts can occur." 

For more information:
Dave Johnson
Gold Coast Pack
Tel: +1 (805) 928-2593

Publication date: 1/5/2018



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