The Heat is On! Quality and supply issues for lettuce, broccoli, and cauliflower due to extreme heat.

Extreme heat will affect lettuce crops for the next few weeks. Inclement weather in the Salinas Valley has resulted in an uptick in heat-related defects, including the potential for internal burn and weaker texture due to current weather challenges. Consistency and severity of these defects will fluctuate depending on the micro-climate that the product is being grown in throughout the Salinas Valley. Extreme weather could impact quality across the industry which will make for a radical situation. Product could experience defects like internal burn, tip burn, and reduced shelf life. ​To alleviate challenges, field teams will be intensely focused on providing the best quality possible by managing harvest times and allocating lots in better conditions for certain cuts that will lend themselves to a better overall finished product. Suppliers will be closely monitoring all incoming raw product while maintaining the entire cold chain process. Maintaining the cold chain will be even more critical now as temperatures rise to ensure shelf life is not compromised in transit. We will continue to monitor the situation and make updates as necessary.



Row Crops 
For the next two to three weeks numerous quality issues are expected from broccoli and cauliflower fields. Supplies are going to be extremely tight as quality issues are resulting in lower yields due to the hot weather over the last couple of weeks and from the rains in March and April. Furthermore, product was moved ahead of schedule which is creating a gap in supply.  Look for the market to continue to climb higher as supplies from the current yields lessen.


Broccoli Bunch 
Light supply with some quality issues including medium heads with minor pin rot, yellow bead, and branching. Crews are leaving defects behind at field level resulting in slight declines in daily supplies. Expect moderate supplies over the next two weeks. Afterwards, over the next four to eight weeks, good to moderate supplies are forecasted but may include minor pin rot, hollow stem, and branching.


Broccoli Crowns
Light supply of broccoli crowns which may include medium to large heads with minor pin rot and brown/yellow bead. Crews are leaving defects behind at the field level resulting in inconsistent daily supplies. Plan for moderate to light supplies over the next week or two. Over the next four to eight weeks, expect moderate to light supplies. Future issues could include minor pin rot and hollow stem.


Light supplies with occasional but minor discoloration, occasional hollow stem, open curds. Crews are leaving defects behind at field level resulting in inconsistent daily supplies. Over the next two weeks expect budgeted supplies with lower yields due to quality issues. Supplies are expected to be at budgeted levels for the next four to eight weeks. Cauliflower could experience slight discoloration issues in addition to hollow stem and open curds.