May 07, 2013

All This Warm Weather
Might Just Bring Us
Early Strawberries

I just got back from Sakuma Brothers Berry farm near Mount Vernon yesterday. Richard Sakuma expects an early start to this year’s strawberry season. With this incredible and unusual warm weather trend this week and over the next several days he thinks we could have fruit as early as the May 20!

Until then, here are some other great-tasting fruits and veggies you might want to try.

New crop New Zealand Kiku and Gala apples arrive in the markets later this week.  New Zealand provides us with sweet, crisp apples well into the summer months thanks to its being  in the opposite hemisphere.

While we support the Northwest region as long as possible, there are some apple varieties that become inconsistent in texture after extended storage. The Gala happens to be one of those apples that harvests very early in the fall of the year and therefore risks becoming mealy as we move into April and May.

Washington asparagus continues to come on SLOWWWWWWLY … The cold nights over the past couple of weeks are just not helping! Cold nights mean cool ground temperatures, which slows growth and reduces supply. When demand exceeds supply, cost remains high. The good news is that the slower growth and cooler temps mean sweeter flavor. And those cool nights cannot last forever. The long-range forecast is for warmer weather so we should see promotional opportunities soon. We also are glad to report the recent arrival of Washington-grown organic asparagus from Inaba Farms of Wapato in the Yakima Valley.

Strawberries have finally completed the transition from Southern California to the newer Watsonville growing area. This means bigger berries and sweeter flavor just in time for Mother’s Day.

A new crop of California blueberries from Family Tree Orchards has arrived in our markets. The flavor and texture of these berries is just excellent! The harvest projections from the grower are for peak production this week through May 26. We are looking for the promotional opportunities within the next two weeks. A new crop of California organic blueberries has also arrived recently. Looking a little further out, I expect to see Northwest grown Blueberries arrive around the middle of June.

Our first shot of the new crop of Arizona seedless watermelon have arrived! These have traditionally been some of the best-tasting watermelons of the season.

White sweet corn arrived this California has arrived and we expect this season’s first bicolor corn today! The eating quality of the bicolor corn is truly outstanding. Our first deliveries of the yellow variety are expected by the weekend.


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