(Oct. 26, 2012) Seedless grapes are as sweet and crisp right now as they get. I believe the Green Pristine, Red Celebration and the Autumn Black Seedless are simply the best eating grapes of the entire year! All are the largest sizes we can get, and are very crisp and sweet. Don’t miss out! There may be an early end to the California grape season this year due to a recent heat wave that went through the region. Basically, any grapes that had yet to be harvested were put at risk with triple-digit temperatures.
It wasn’t just grapes that suffered. Fresh figs in the northern growing area got cooked! The heat hit what was left of this crop hardest of all. This season was already winding down fast and the 100-plus-degree temperatures put a fork in it. We will see a few trickle in, but for the most part, it’s over.
In our markets today are the new, Northwest-grown “Sweetie” apple! This apple, which originated in New Zealand and is now grown in the Northwest, was created through a marriage of Braeburn and Gala apples. Sweetie gets its firm, crisp texture from the Braeburn and its sweetness is reminiscent of the Gala. Only grown in a few small orchards its availability is limited to just a few short weeks. Of course we do also have many other new-crop Northwest apples to choose from including Braeburn, Fuji, Jonagold, Gala, Honeycrisp and more.
The Northwest and Canadian tomatoes and peppers also are winding down fast. We will be in transition to southern growing areas over the next few weeks
Look for a great value on the Australian seedless navels oranges starting Wednesday (Oct. 10). Australia is in the peak of its season. If you have experienced how tasty the California citrus crop is in late February, you’ll get a sense of the season in the southern hemisphere. These oranges are heavy with juice and full of sugar and a great value to boot. The California navel orange crop is several weeks off, and the early California fruit really does not eat all that well.
Avocados continue to be an excellent value in the markets. As a rule, we do our best to offer the larger sized fruit. Avocados are sized to specific counts that fit in a standardized carton and are available in sizes ranging from 160 to 28 per box. The bulk of the crop will fall into the 70 to 40 count size range. We do our best to stay with the 36 counts in conventional avocados, and the 48s in organic. Hass avocados have very high oil content and this is where they get their rich, creamy texture. And avocados are extremely nutrient dense. The very best Hass avocados are grown in California, followed by Mexico. The California season comes to a close during October and we will transition to Mexican growing areas over the next few weeks. Just an FYI, nearly all the Mexican-grown avocados are grown by the same growers who grow them in California.
On a final note I am curious, do you find this blog useful? What more would you like to see in this communication? I welcome, and appreciate your comments.
Have a great day!