Strong supply of organic melons for July 4th promotions

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Strong supply of organic melons for July 4th promotions

The Organic Produce Network reports that warm weather and a smooth transition from spring to summer in production areas have resulted in a good supply of several organic melon varieties.

Watermelons, including both organic mini watermelons (also called personal watermelons) and large-sized fruit, typically referred to as bin melons, are readily available. There are also good supplies of organic honeydew and cantaloupes.

“We are seeing very strong demand for all of our melons,” said Ashley Berlinger, business development manager/sales representative for Creekside Organics Inc., Bakersfield, California.

The supply is keeping up with demand, she added, and at least through June, there should be competitive FOB pricing that facilitates retail promotions for July 4 ads.

Berlinger mentioned that there are still organic melon supplies coming from Mexico, and the company is also sourcing significant volumes from farming operations in Holtville in California’s Imperial Valley.

“Melons are a great ad item,” she said. “Quality is excellent and we are seeing strong brix.”

Berlinger revealed that Creekside’s production will move up to the San Joaquin Valley as the summer moves on, with both the Bakersfield area in Southern San Joaquin Valley and Firebaugh on the west side of the valley producing various melon varieties.

“We will have good supplies of cantaloupes, honeydew, and mini watermelons through September,” she said. “We’re not taking our foot off the gas all summer.” 

Howard Nager, director of marketing and business development for Los Angeles-based Pacific Trellis Fruit and its Dulcinea brand, stated that the company expects to have a good supply of organic mini and bin watermelons throughout the summer. He agreed that both varieties offer solid retail promotional opportunities for the July 4th holiday.

Turning his attention to the organic minis, Nager said, “We are currently finishing up production in Hermosillo, Mexico, and we’ve already begun shipping from Yuma (Arizona) as well. We will be pulling from Yuma through June, including July 4. In July we will transition to California, which will give us good supplies of minis through the summer.”

He noted that the fruit is currently at the perfect and most desirable size, peaking at 6 to 8 per carton. “We are seeing excellent demand with the organic minis receiving a $2 to $4 premium over conventional minis.”

He said the full-size organic bin watermelons are following the same production pattern as the minis, with production winding up in Hermosillo this first week of June before transitioning to the San Luis area in Mexicali, just south of the U.S. border, for the remainder of June.

That fruit will be staged in Yuma along with the mini watermelons, allowing for one-stop shopping. He added that there are strong supplies of organic bin watermelons with a very small price gap separating the organic and conventional fruit’s FOB prices.

The Dulcinea brand has made great strides and its utilization of several different fruits is helping it become very recognizable to the general public. “In 2023, with all our items—including melons, grapes, stone fruit, and citrus—the Dulcinea brand created close to 100 million consumer impressions,” Nager said.


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