Hot summer pushes Mexican mangoes into overdrive
Californian-based Splendid Products owner Larry Nienkerk, said two of the main regions where it sources from - North Nayarait, South Sinaloa and South Nayarai, Jalisco - were almost entirely overlapping.
"We have a somewhat different situation with the producing areas this year. They are coming on at the same time so you have a doubling up. Also, Tommy Atkins and Kent are coming together, normally Kent comes on stream later and this has caused an increase in volumes," he said.
Nienkerk said the later producing area of North Sinaloa would start harvesting in 10 days time which was earlier than normal, resulting in even more overlap.
He predicted the northern areas would finish one week earlier than usual, while the more southern areas finishing two weeks ahead of schedule.
National Mango Board (NMB) figures for week 24 showed Mexican volumes hit 3,645,726 cartons 8.8lbs (4 kilograms); 578,320 cartons more than predicted.
Los Angeles-based Coast Tropical sales manager Lance Mellon, agreed five varieties, - Ataulfo, Tommy Atkins, Haden, Kent and Keitt - could potentially come on stream at the same time this season.
"Sometimes they overlap and sometimes there's a gap. This year we may have all five converging. Everyone loves variety and at least we have a lot to offer at any one time."
Coast Tropical president Jimmy Alvarez said the surge in volumes meant prices were currently under pressure at US$3-3.5 per 4 kg carton at point of entry into the U.S.
But he added this was typical for Mexico's peak shipping season of June and July and that prices were no lower than at the same point last year.
Nienkerk added that prices had held up well especially considering Mexican volumes were up by 10-15% this year.
"As far as I am concerned, with the volumes we have prices are quite good. We have to congratulate the National Mango Board for promoting the fruit. The public are accepting mangoes as a mainstream item which is a very positive indicator for the future."
Arizona-based Ciruli Brothers chief operating officer Chris Ciruli predicted prices would start to rise again next month with the bigger sized varities coming on stream such as Kents.
"Supply is higher than last year. People who have been in the business for a long time period of time are still moving the higher volumes. We are seeing a growth of 10-15% year after year out of Mexico and barring weather issues you will see this trend continue."