Ryan Fagerberg at Fagerberg Produce in Eaton, CO, said on Dec. 21 that the last three weeks leading up to Christmas saw “really steady movement of all colors and sizes,” and the expected slowdown at year’s end was beginning to show up three days before the holiday.
“It has been good,” Ryan said of the market, noting, “We still have lots of onions left after the good harvest we had, and we’ll run into late March or even early April.”
He added that transplants for the Colorado fields were planted in Arizona in November, and they’ll be moved to the Eaton area in April. Those are the earliest onions offered by Fagerberg.
Reds have shown a bit more activity than normal, and Ryan said above average inquiries have come in for contract reds. “The majority of our reds are spoken for,” he said. “But we can still take calls.”
There will be additional reds planted for 2016, but Ryan said that “decisions made here are not dictated by conditions in other growing areas.” He said, “We had a gap between our transplants and seeded this year, and by planting more in 2016 we’re assuring there won’t be that gap.”
Kent Sutherland of J.C. Watson Packing Co. in Parma, ID, said the overall market has been active this week with good volume and movement. Kent added that “holiday movement has been extremely strong.”
In Payette, ID, Dan Phillips of Central Produce Distributing Co. said the market is moving up and showing good strength in pricing. Dan also said Central has manageable supplies for the balance of the season so they can be a bit more selective on their orders. Looking ahead to the beginning of 2016, Dan said Central is anticipating a good market in January and February. The company finished up its holiday shipments on Dec. 23 and will return with production in full swing on Jan. 4.
Columbia Basin–Gary Atkin at Columbia Basin Onion in Hermiston, OR, agreed with his onion industry counterparts that business has been very busy this week. Gary said that’s holiday movement and business overall, with especially good demand from Mexico on whites. “Demand has exceeded available run times this week,” he said. Gary added that pricing is on the rise for jumbos across all colors. Medium reds market pricing is also increasing, and medium yellows are holding steady.