Increasing prices in Mexico and lower in-bounds, approximately 30% down over the last 7 days, are starting to create some movement in price. The US market is struggling to react on the larger sized fruit but is getting stronger on the smaller limes. Quality is still adequate, however, most importers are repacking limes upon receiving to insure a good pack. The shelf life is typically reduced on summer limes and is presenting some issues with receivers. Quality is the largest contributing factor as to what is stymieing the market. The issues are oil spotting, styler, and light color. Very few shippers will guarantee a US#1 grade so most are offering only Combo grade. The limes are actually at their peak flavor and juice content. Sizing is running larger, with most availability being on 175s and larger. Key limes and organics are very steady with no major increases in prices.
Mango Crop Update
We are in week 29 now. The volume of round mangoes has come down significantly the past two weeks due the field price in Mexico being too high to break even at the low market prices in the USA. This is because the Frozen and Juice industry in Mexico cannot get enough volume strictly from the grade outs of the Kents and are buying production in the fields at prices that compete with the fresh industry. This has raised the floor price for the growers. In the Arrival Volume Chart below you can observe on the far right the “Total Round Mango Boxes all COOs” column went from extremely high volumes of over 3 million boxes down to less than 2 million the past two weeks. The market is firming up here in the USA as shippers clean up on inventory. Volumes of rounds should go back up because Northern Sinaloa (Zona Libre) is finishing the Ataulfo (Honey) crop and will go heavily into the Kent variety.
We are still comfortable offering and committing to round mango ads through mid-August at this time. We just need to have early commitment at prices that allow us to secure the production so it is not sold elsewhere if the markets get hot. Quality, appearance, and flavor are all still excellent on the round fruit and should be the rest of the season. It has been a great year on flavor. By mid-August we expect the sizing to shift very large and the best ad opportunities to be on the Jumbo sizes like 5s/6s/7s. The price curve has already inverted with smaller fruit priced higher than large fruit. There seems to be more demand than supply on 10s/12s at the moment and the expectation going forward is for the size curve to run larger due to Northern Sinaloa fruit traditionally sizing up.
Stores on ad on conventional mangoes rose from 6,047 stores to 7,956 stores on ad for the week ending 7/20/18. Weighted average retail price is $0.87 per piece. This put mangoes back into the top 10 fruits on ad. See the USDA Data on Retail Mango Ads chart below for detailed data by geographic region of the country. Stores on ad with Organic mangoes rose from 686 stores to 1,151 stores this week. Average Organic price was at $1.13 per piece.