Tomato Shortages, Tomato Prices Spiking After Hurricane Irma Delayed Florida Production

Tomato growers have faced delays and lower early yields following Hurricane Irma, which caused damage in Florida in the first half of September 2017.

The lower volumes of Florida tomatoes have raised prices compared to the same time period in 2016. According to fruit and vegetable news source The Packer, the f.o.b. price reported Nov. 27 from Orlando by the U.S. Department of Agriculture was $25.95 for a 25-pound carton of size 5×6 or 6×6. Last year at the same time period, a carton of 5×6 cost $13.95 and a carton of 6×6 was going for $9.95-10.95.

Most of the damage occurred during a phase before planting. Some plastic was destroyed and some plants were knocked over, but much planting was merely delayed until repairs were made after Hurricane Irma.

There is a lag in production and shipment to store, but operations were expected to returned to normal by late December 2017 and shipments are expected to catch up in January 2018.

A shortage of tomatoes that currently exists, which has caused a price spike and removal of tomatoes from some restaurant menus, will probably be supplanted by shipments from Mexico until the Florida shipments get up to speed.

According to The Packer, The USDA reports there are about 80 producers of Florida tomatoes in the production area, and 47 handlers subject to regulation.

See also …
thepacker.com Strong market for tomatoes after Irma

The Packer Florida tomato assessments to decline









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