We finally saw some rainfall this week after a very dry February. The extended forecast shows more precipitation coming this weekend. It cannot be emphasized enough how important it will be for the growing season to have additional storms come through in March and April as we are currently well behind in our annual rainfall. The bloom as reported is 95% complete now, so let it rain, let it rain. The storm door appears to be re-opened as the pineapple express is headed our way and pray for our friends and families in Hawaii that have endured the flash floods.
The Almond Board of California has released the February shipment report. Crop receipts are now at a tantalizing 3.088 billion pounds, up 22% over last year. The industry, while well sold, still has 877 million pounds of uncommitted inventory.
It should be noted that there was a handler that previously under-reported 6.9 million pounds of shipments in previous month(s), 5.5 million lbs. domestic and 1.4 million lbs. export. The numbers below reflect the actuals for the month of February subtracting these errors.
February has rebounded nicely with 227.3 million pounds shipped, +12.6% from a year ago. For the export market, 162.57 million pounds shipped, +18.3% over last year. Domestic remained flat for February having shipped 64.73 million pounds.
Overall the industry remains 16.20% ahead of last year at this time with 1.7 billion pounds shipped year-to-date.
Week 10 Update:
February shipments proved to be strong, putting the industry back on track after taking a breath in January. New sales for the month were 189 million pounds.
Pricing in the meantime has remained very stable for the last two weeks now signifying resistance from the growers for prices falling any lower. With today’s report one would imagine a firming over the course of the next few days.
The processing of ingredients remains strong with most packers full through April and heading into May.
We continue to see heavy congestion at the ports and no end in sight. There are shortages of containers which contribute to loads being rolled back further.
With over 875 million pounds of uncommitted inventory and pressure at the ports, remaining inventory may be difficult to move.
The bloom has concluded now and it went without a hitch. Conditions for another strong harvest are all lined up.
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