Looking forward to large cherries

From The Packer | 28 March 2022

Overview of cherries from California in the U.S. market, complemented by charts from Agronometrics. Original published on March 25, 2022. 

While the crop size may not match last year’s high yields, The Flavor Tree Fruit Company in Hanford, Calif., is expecting large cherries for the upcoming harvest.

“We received ideal growing conditions in California during the dormant period in all of our cherry-growing regions,” Kaleb Smith, assistant sales manager, told The Packer. “Initial bloom was very healthy in the southern and central growing districts, and so far, our earliest orchards have shown a very promising crop.

“Although it does not look like we will be receiving last year’s substantially high yields, we are very encouraged by the current crop load, as the conditions are ideal for us to produce large-size cherries with great quality,” he continued. “We expect promotable volume for shipments throughout the Month of May and are very excited for the season as we await our first harvest.”

How might current supply chain issues impact California cherry season this year?

cherry volumes by histor 3

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

“Supply chain issues have plagued us for the past two years and we do not anticipate any changes for this season,” said Smith.

While these issues aren’t going away any time soon, like many fresh produce suppliers, The Flavor Tree Fruit Company is taking a strategic approach to minimize potential supply chain challenges.

“We have been required to preplan as much as possible in all areas of logistics,” Smith said. “For example, we were required to order our packaging and materials months in advance of the season — far before we had any idea of crop size.

“Recent rises in fuel costs will also complicate things for us on availability of transportation during the season,” added Smith. “Nonetheless, we are excited to begin shipments of our delicious California-grown cherries.”

With “promotable volume for shipments” on the horizon, The Flavor Tree Fruit Company is recommending that retailers build large displays that incorporate branded boxes at the front of the produce section.

Additionally, Smith said the company’s Sequoia- and Suntree-branded handled-pouch cherry bags “continue to be a great way to put a focus on our premium cherries.”

The News in Charts is a collection of stories from the industry complemented by charts from Agronometrics to help better tell their story.

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