The domestic U.S. market has been supplied with much lower volumes of fruit this year than in 2017, USDA data shows.
Coachella has finished up with a total of 3.8 million 18-pound boxes, which is 22% down year-on-year, while Mexican supplies as of the end of July were 24% down at 16.1 million boxes.
The lower supplies have been reflected in the prices for both origins.
Throughout June, Coachella grapes fetched average weekly prices of between US$28.00 and US$30.30, which were 36% – 54% higher year-on-year on any given week, while Mexico’s prices of between US$20.20 and US$27.00 were 44% – 61% higher.
By week 28, Coachella prices were 27% up year-on-year at US$27.00, while Mexico’s were 34% up at US$15.00.
Kern County grapes also began the season at higher prices than normal, fetching US$24.00 for a 19-pound box in week 29, whereas for the previous three years in the same week its prices had been only US$19.00 – $20.00.
The San Joaquin Valley, however, has not seen the higher prices enjoyed by the other origins this season, with week 30 and 31 prices of US$19.60 and US$18.60 in line with the three-year average.
U.S. grape exports through June this year were down by a quarter in volume and value compared to 2017, at around 12,000 metric tons (MT) and US$30 million.
Shipments to Mexico grew by 20% to 3,500MT while to Canada they fell 25% to 3,000MT.
Total export volume from the U.S. has remained relatively flat over the last three years at between 332,500MT and 343,000MT with a value of between US$750 million and US$785 million.