Organic Tomatoes –Weather temperatures last week were below normal, but this week predicted temperatures are forecasting low 100’s. It makes it hard to predict a precise harvest date with these temperature swings. Therefore, we are still estimating July 1st as the harvest date. The crop is looking good and maturing nicely.
Pear Shapes – The crop is maturing nicely with no issues at this time. Fruit continues to develop and plants are looking very healthy. It appears the younger plants made it through the last heat wave with very little blossom drop. Crop looks to be ahead of schedule by a few days.
Conventional Tomatoes – The crop is progressing very nicely. All conventional tomatoes seem to have made it through the last heat wave; growers did a nice job keeping fields irrigated during one of many of Mother Nature’s challenges.
The USDA’s California Processing Tomato Report announced that the total planted tomato acreage decreased by 8% (25,000 acres, 1.1M tons) from the previous year.
Conventional harvest is expected to start sometime during the last week of June. Size continues to be a concern with all varieties. Reference date plus 30 days for the Modesto/Madera District came in at 40.5 mm, which is 1.8 mm smaller than last year. Reference date plus 30 days for the Marysville/Yuba City District average size was 41.7 mm, 1.3mm larger than last year. Recent cooler temperatures have no doubt helped with sizing, but with above 100 degree weather forecasted for the next week, that will change. Organic harvest continues and the fruit quality is excellent.
The damage from the hailstorm in May will not be determinable until harvest time in July and August. Some orchards will see a total loss, while others will see between 5% to 50% loss. Some report an estimated peach loss of 28,000 cases.
Apricot harvest is complete. Almost all growers have come in slightly under pre-season estimates. Some spotty overripe fruit was seen late, but overall size and quality were above average. We were able to secure the tonnage to make a full pack.
Pears are sizing well and continue to look good in both districts. Growers continue to mow and irrigate orchards. Harvest is anticipated to start on July 5th in some orchards.
Berry softening is starting to occur and bunches are filling in. Crop potential continues to look good.