Lets make Produce great Again #MPGA
GOOD MORNING AND HAPPY WEDNESDAY! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and spent much needed time with your family. I drove from Texas to Florida and back to see me Dad and Sisters, nieces and nephews and it was awesome. My Dad is 84 and he is the reason I have been in the produce business all these years and still loves speaking about the old days.
IN THE NEWS
The biggest news of the week was the e coli outbreak in Romaine lettuce. I really don’t like to write on topics where I don’t have a clear understanding so please educate me? I would think that with all the Billions of dollars spent on traceability and food safety we would be able to do a much better job than closing down the whole industry on romaine lettuce instead of limiting it to a certain area or region, which was done after the damage was done? Correct me if I am wrong here on my detective work? 20 people get sick. What is the common denominator of what they ate? AHH Romaine. Where did you eat it, buy it? This store that restaurant. Where did they get it? Was it a specific packing house, was it in a specific geographical area? If it was a problem with meat, they would know where the cow was and who was the Mother and Father. I really believe the problem here and for that fact much of the produce industry was people not in the produce industry are making decisions about the produce industry, in this case the CDC. Once produce representatives became involved the romaine problem was isolated to a specific area. The CDC with their blanket assessment did irreputable damage to many Florida and California romaine growers. The same is true with the attorney’s representing the facts of the suspension agreement without the knowledge of how the supply and demand cycles of produce work, it’s not dumping its how we sell produce. I would also argue that many if not most large retailers have lost touch with how to market, display, enhance and sell produce because they went with cost cutting over experienced produce people or want to sell produce the same way they learned to sell widgets in College. It’s not the same it’s produce. Put real produce people back in produce and watch the transformation.
I just read 2 days ago an ad for #WholeFoods for a produce team trainer. This position was to train their produce team for their produce departments. The experience required for this position was 6-12 months! This my friends is why there is no clear leader in the produce sector. As I always say the battles for supremacy is in grocery, but the war will be won in fresh! 6 to 12 months experience? I have a much better idea. Hire someone with 20- or 30-years’ experience to train your produce team trainers for a year, then they may be qualified to train others. Always keep them learning and training. This is how one of you will win the produce wars and be the king of omni channel marketing. If you need the people with this kind of experience, I can provide this too. Let’s make produce great again. #mpga. I am here to help.
Cool weather in the South as well as Mexico should slow production across the board. Demand is lethargic, so prices will not be affected. This could change by next Wednesday when demand should start picking up.
RED PEPPERS. Finishing up in California and starting in Mexico. This market is still short. Be careful with first Mexican reds because many have mixed color to catch the higher dollar market. This market should stay strong.
GREEN PEPPERS. More volume less demand this market will be lower
EGGPLANTS. – Market will be lower on more volume
GREEN SQUASH. Cool weather may stop the slide. Green squash is cheap. Warmer temps in about 5 days can pick volume up again.
YELLOW SQUASH – This item feels top heavy but it may take the warmer temps after the cool weather before we see prices lower.
CUCUMBERS – Same deal here cool temps may stop the slide.
ROMA TOMATOES will be lower on slow demand
LIMES are cheap now but I always worry for the January shortage.
IF you need it bought, sold, loaded or looked at I would appreciate the opportunity to serve you. Produce is my life and it will show in how hard I work for you. Have a wonderful week. Thank you sharing is caring.