Publications

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  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: May 2015

    VGS-355, May 01, 2015

    Total vegetables and pulses output volume rose 5 percent in 2014 despite ongoing drought and water shortages in California, where 40 percent of U.S. vegetables and pulses are grown.

  • Seasonal Fresh Fruit Price Patterns Differ Across Commodities: The Case of Strawberries and Apples

    Amber Waves, October 06, 2014

    Fresh produce prices are subject to seasonal patterns, the result of uneven demand, supply, or movement to market, when either production and/or use is concentrated during particular months. Over the past 30 years, changes in imports, production, storage, and demand have all occurred in fresh produce markets and may have influenced shifts in seasonal price patterns.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: September 2014

    VGS-354, September 30, 2014

    Despite the decrease in domestic production of fresh-market vegetables, both producer and consumer prices are down as import volumes fill the gaps.

  • Evolving U.S. Fruit Markets and Seasonal Grower Price Patterns

    FTS-357-01, September 29, 2014

    ERS analyzes seasonal patterns in grower prices for several major U.S. fresh fruits markets. Strawberries, grapes, and peaches all have distinct seasonal price patterns. In several cases, the timing of high and low prices has shifted.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: March 2013

    VGS-353, March 29, 2013

    According to the California Processing Tomato Report, National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA, California tomato processors intend to contract 2.8 percent more processing tomatoes in 2013 than the previous year.

  • Protected-Culture Technology Transforms the Fresh-Tomato Market

    Amber Waves, February 21, 2013

    In calendar year 2011, protected culture tomatoes made up 40 percent of U.S. tomato shipments, up from less than 10 percent in 2004; they now dominate the retail industry and are becoming more common in foodservice. The transition to protected culture tomatoes is likely to accelerate if growers can meet foodservice demand, particularly from fast food buyers.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook; December 2012

    VGS-352, December 18, 2012

    The 2012 U.S. dry bean crop is expected to reach 31.8 million cwt, an increase of almost 60 percent from low production levels of 2011.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: September 2012

    VGS-351, September 27, 2012

    Use of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) has increased in the United States as consumption of food such as humus expands. I n 2012, a record 196,900 acres were planted with Washington, Idaho, and California leading producers in the previous year.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: June 2012

    VGS-350, June 28, 2012

    Prices at the point of first sale remain low for most fresh-market vegetables and consumer prices also fell in the first 5 months of 2012. Volumes are strong as mild winter and early spring temperatures allowed early planting in many areas. Per capita use of fresh-market vegetables fell less than 1 percent in 2011 compared to the previous year.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: March 2012

    VGS-349, March 30, 2012

    Fresh-market vegetable supplies remain strong, pushing prices lower for most crops. Market impacts from an early-year freeze in parts of Florida were minimal as production was still largely in southern parts of the State. In 2011 (the first year of data availability) organic fresh vegetable exports were less than 10 percent of trade in conventional production on average. Shares were notably higher in onion sets, carrots and spinach. Value of both imports and exports of all fresh vegetables increased in 2011, although trade volume slowed somewhat in early 2012.

  • U.S. Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Marketing: Emerging Trade Practices, Trends, and Issues

    AER-795, January 25, 2001

    In the past year, trade practices between fresh produce shippers and food retailers gained national attention. Shippers are concerned that recent retail consolidation has led to market power and the growing incidence of fees and services. Retailers argue that these new trade practices reflect their costs of doing business and the demands of consumers. Trade practices include fees such as volume discounts and slotting fees, as well as services like automatic inventory replenishment, special packaging, and requirements for third-party food safety certification. Trade practices also refer to the overall structure of a transaction-for example, long-term relationships or contracts versus daily sales with no continuing commitment. This study compares trade practices in 1999 with those prevalent in 1994, placing them in the broader context of the evolving shipper/retailer relationship. Most shippers and retailers reported that the incidence and magnitude of fees and services associated with transactions has increased over the last 5 years. Fees paid to retailers are usually around 1-2 percent of sales for most of the commodities we examined, but 1-8 percent for bagged salads.