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California settles into strawberry production

The supply of California strawberries has evened out. "We have a steady supply/demand stream now that Florida and Central Mexico have ceased harvesting," says Michelle Deleissegues of GEM-Pack Berries.

She adds that its production yields have been high due to warmer-than-usual winter and early spring temperatures. "Although we've seen a lot of rain–and rain continues–the temperatures were generally warm and the plants responded with strong production," she says.

The seasons along the Central Coast started on time and will continue harvesting into the fall. Right now, harvest is underway in Oxnard and Santa Maria, California with Oxnard approaching peak season in the next few weeks. Meanwhile, Santa Maria is about three weeks behind Oxnard and Watsonville/Salinas is just getting started. There is also industry production in Baja in northern Mexico.

Strawberries in Oxnard are approaching peak season in the next few weeks.

Movement on strawberries
On demand, it's steady and responsive to spring promotions with consumers showing they're ready for spring berries.

As for pricing, a few weeks ago prices were low due to oversupply with berries still shipping out of Central Mexico and Florida. "Now that these two regions have stopped harvesting, remaining regions' production is meeting demand instead of exceeding and pricing is starting to become more consistent too," says Deleissegues.

Looking ahead, GEM-Pack Berries expects to have volume matched with good quality with Oxnard and Santa Maria ramping up strongly and Watsonville/Salinas moving into more steady production. "We're quickly approaching peak season for California and we're ready," says Deleissegues.

The company is also ready for the upcoming CPMA show this month in which it will be exhibiting for the first time as Gem-Pack and Well-Pict jointly at booth #647. "We look forward to seeing all of our northern customers and colleagues and catching up on the winter season and discussing the spring and summer seasons ahead," adds Deleissegues.

For more information:
Michelle Deleissegues
GEM-Pack Berries
Tel.: +1 (831) 320-8181
[email protected]