My mission is to educate and train consumers and the produce industry with proven old school practices, marrying them with new world technology and metrics to facilitate  omni channel marketing of produce to the benefit of grower, wholesaler, retailer and consumer.

  • redpepperking

Suspension agreement and everything old is new again.


Good morning and happy Wednesday. Well May 7 has come and gone, and we don’t have a new suspension agreement, HOORAY. Now contradictory from what the doomsayers are stating we will all be all right. For the first time in 25 years tomatoes will be sold how every other item in produce is sold, with the natural, efficient, non-manipulated laws of supply and demand. Yes, I heard it all how tomatoes will double in price to consumers, there will be shortages, and all the rest. Let me assure you there may be a time when prices do go up but you can bet the ranch, if they are up for any significant amount of time, growers will plant more, supplies will increase and markets will stabilize. Here is a little history lesson. When the minimum on tomatoes was raise from $5.60 to $8.30 several years ago, there was a huge over- supply of tomatoes, why? Because everyone who could grow tomatoes in Mexico knew that $8.30 for a 25# box of tomatoes was very profitable, and they all counted their money before the season began. Most of them forgot one very important part of the equation, they had to sell them. That year and for the years after, until this year, many tomatoes were either dumped, returned to Mexico to their National market and were sold for $.50 to $3 or shipped to Canada for $2 or $3 per box. Canada does not have a suspension agreement. This scenario actually hurt Mexican growers as well as consumers, Why? Because if the markets did not have a manipulated, regulated floor price those tomatoes could have been sold to the USA at a reduced price to wholesalers and retailers and then trickle down to the consumer. The growers may have had a better average by not dumping the product into the fields or selling them at a highly reduced price. This is real sustainability. Before you say anything about the poor Florida tomato growers, PLEASE don’t worry because they too are part of Mexican tomato industry and profit greatly from it. No suspension agreement is good for all parties, albeit it may take a little time for supply and demand to take effect to balance the equation and stabilize the market.


Seems like every day I read about a new trend in retail. To name a few, reduce or eliminate plastic packaging, sell produce without any packaging, sell only organic produce, sustainability and the environment, lower prices on produce. Hey Mr. retailer these are not new ideas, they have been around for over a hundred years but if you need more new old ideas please read this.

Let’s take sustainability first, the sustainable story they are telling you is a lie. They only use the word to make you feel better and make them more profits. The only real way for us to sustain growers large and small is for the growers to sell all or most of their crop at a fair price. There is a system to do this that has worked for literally thousands of years and it is supply and demand. This system is fair to all parties. At times of low supplies prices are up and the farmer profits and time of heavy supply prices come down, so the consumer gets cheaper prices and the wholesalers and retailers sell more volume. Unfortunately, this is not how it’s done right now but it is the best way forward.

Packaging or the lack thereof. WOW what a new concept. How the hell do you think we sold produce before you ruined it? Packaging hides or beautiful produce which is better displayed naked. Many stores saw a major increase in sales when they switched to this “new” way of selling produce that has been around for 200 plus years.

Organic produce FYI before all the chemicals all of our produce was grown organically.

I do believe this is the next big step forward, when organic produce can be sold at or close to the conventional counterparts. To that end, I am now involved with 600 acres of certified organic land in Texas and I hope to push that dream into reality, so stay tuned. There are many new and great ideas but there are many of the old ways that have worked and will continue to work if someone has the foresight and the hindsight to try them.


RED PEPPERS– California red peppers have started, and we still have Mexican red peppers available which should keep the market steady for this week.

YELLOW PEPPERS – Mexican and Canadian are the only game in town, market is steady.

GREEN PEPPERS. – Demand is very good. Mexican peppers are winding down in volume and size. California green peppers are excellent quality and are in demand. Florida does not have their usual volume which is keeping the west coast markets strong.

EGGPLANTS. Mexican eggs are winding down as well in the field grown variety. There are HH available and the market is higher and quality is excellent.

CUCUMBERS – Good volume steady pricing.

SQUASH Green and yellow squash are short in Mexico prices are steady.

ROMA TOMATOES -At or close to the minimum, which now no longer exist.

LIMES demand exceeds supplies especially on large sizes.

See you Sunday. I am in NY and have to get to the market. Have a great day!!!

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