Featured image: Kalfresh onion harvest in Australia. Photo courtesy of Robert Bell with Western Onion, and be sure to check out the Kalfresh story also in this week’s edition.
Hayden Bingham with L&M Cos. in Raleigh, NC, said on October 25 that demand has been steady this week. “The IFPA show didn’t appear to make much difference on orders,” he said. Hayden added, “The buyers that knew they would be out for the convention put their orders in early, and it seems like everyone is getting back to it this week, so we haven’t missed a beat. Buyers are looking for a little bit of everything, but medium reds and yellows are high on the list.” On the market, Hayden said, for the most part, it has remained unchanged. “The market has been about the same for the last couple of weeks, but now that everyone has done or nearly complete with harvest, we anticipate a move upward.” Hayden said L&M’s Kansas and Colorado deal has completed harvest. “Harvest is complete in Kansas and Colorado, and quality has been great there and with our Warden WA deal.” On transportation, Hayden said, “For some areas, loading flatbeds is not an option anymore, but we can get trucks so things are running OK.”
Rick Greener with Greener Produce provided his report on October 25. “Demand last week was good, and this week, but this week it’s sort of ‘Doot-doot-do’,” Rick said. “Demand isn’t crazy, but it’s OK, and we’re looking to get out of the dog days of October and on to the holiday business. In some regions, it’s easier to get some colors and sizes than others. This week, sales seem to be at a steady pace, but when you break it down, Idaho-Oregon is getting tight on product overall. Call for availability. Washington is getting that way for the rest of the week, so again, call and pre-plan. Out of Utah, we are pulling Jumbo yellows, Colossals, jumbo whites, and medium whites. We have nice prepack reds coming out of Michigan. We can get all colors and sizes of organics out of Cali. We assume that some sheds may not be packing a full schedule due to labor, and some sheds also ship potatoes, and they have to allocate labor to that. No matter what the reason, preplanning is key. I have to say, wherever the region the onions are coming from, quality has been great. Oh, and by way, we’re doing some good on the export side and moving onions outside the US, too.” Rick commented on the market and transportation. “The market seems stable at this point, and transportation hit and miss depending on the lane and whether you can still use a flatbed. Another good reason to pre-plan.”
Jason Pearson with Eagle Eye Produce in Nyssa, OR told us on October 25 that demand was pretty good last week, and IFPA didn’t have much impact,” Jason said. “Demand seems to be picking up too. I think prior to harvest being complete, some buyers weren’t sure where everything was at, and now that most sheds have a solid footing, demand is moving back up. Demand is good for everything across the board, but jumbo reds and yellows are doing well, while medium whites and reds are very tight.” Jason commented on the market. “Well, let’s face it; the market, while the market isn’t great by any means, at least it’s not going down, and that’s a good sign. A good sign because we need upward movement for our growers.” Jason added his comment on trucks, “Freight has been OK. We are still loading some flatbeds, and availability also good, so we don’t have much to complain about on freight this week.”
Brad Sumner with Pacific Coast Trading Co. in Portland told us on October 25 that demand for organic onions has been a little less this week. “With the IFPA show, demand has been less, but hopefully, after we all get back at our desks, extra orders will appear.” He said, “Buyers who are attending the show will buy extra the prior week to not miss with inventories during the show. So, buying volume becomes less last week and then replenishing supplies leads to more buying this week. However, in our case, I have a little extra in our shipping warehouses than I like. ” All colors and sizes are moving well for us. I would like more Jumbo yellow OG business but…” About the market, he commented, “Market seems depressed only because of lack of business. I feel we are chasing the market down trying to compete over the same orders.” On transportation, he noted, “Transportation appears in a normal state for this time of year. Waiting on the holiday crunch.”
David DeBerry with Southwest Onion Growers in McAllen, TX, told us on October 25 that “Ahlberg Family Farms in Delta has started shipping out of storage this week. “We are packing all three colors out of storage now, and the size profile is very heavy to jumbos. Additionally, we have been extremely happy with the condition and appearance.” David also commented on transportation. “Transportation has been plentiful and at reasonable rates.”
Western Colorado/Corinne, UT:
Don Ed Holmes with The Onion House in Weslaco, TX, told us on October 25 that his Olathe, CO grower, John Harold, is shipping all colors and sizes. “It’s been a steady run for all sizes and colors this week, and quality is great!” Don Ed said. “We will be shipping out of Corinne, Utah, starting Monday.”