Saturated cherry tomato market a challenge

Supplies of organic cherry tomatoes continue to be steady. “Organic cherry tomatoes are grown up and down the coast of Baja all year long. However, the winter season is our sweet spot for quality and flavor, and we’ve been growing splendidly since December,” says Katie Bishop of Jacobs Farm del Cabo. 

The organic grower-shipper has farms on the Baja Peninsula, each of which has its own specific microclimate, which helps keep that supply consistent as well as take advantage of different kinds of weather. Currently, it is getting most of its cherry tomatoes from its farms in Baja Sur, San Jose del Cabo.

As for the demand for cherry tomatoes, it too remains steady, even with one notable concern. “One of the biggest challenges we see is the saturated cherry tomato market on the supply side. There are a lot more options than there were even three years ago,” says Bishop.

Expanded tomato category
That said, consumers love cherry tomatoes, and the category continues to see a repositioning of both cherry and grape tomato varieties as “snacking tomatoes,” which in turn has led to that expansion of both supply and demand.

What could help Jacobs Farm del Cabo’s demand for cherry tomatoes is its paperboard packaging, particularly since consumers are increasingly interested in sustainable packaging options from their produce providers. “The paperboard pack is curbside recyclable, made from recycled material, and home compostable. It’s as clean and green as it gets,” says Bishop, adding that consumers are responding positively to the packaging.

As for pricing, following a stint of higher pricing due to higher demand a few weeks ago, pricing in the cherry tomato market has now settled and remains steady, a pattern that was seen last year at this time as well.

Looking ahead, Bishop notes that a freeze for Baja, California is expected to pass through in the next few weeks. “It’s just the next chapter of ongoing extreme weather events impacting the west coast. However, we are confident that we will have the needed volumes to fill demand,” she says.

For more information:
Katie Bishop
Jacobs Farm del Cabo
Tel.: +1 (831) 460-3500  

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