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California Strawberry Processing Volume to September 16

9/19/2017  By Dan Winiecke
California Strawberry Processing Volume to September 16The amount of pounds processed year to date in California of strawberry has been the lowest of the past four years. Fruit used in #1 grade production has come in much lower than the past few years, but juice grade fruit is larger in volume this year. The demand for juice grade fruit is somewhat being driven by demand for juice concentrate due to a lack of supply in other areas of the world. A late heat spell, accompanied by rain showers a little more than a week ago, caused enough damage to the strawberry areas in California to generate 15 million pounds of juice grade quality fruit in the past three weeks. Strawberry grade #1 fruit has been very slow during the same time period. Some processors are still looking for fruit in this category to fill orders. It is unclear if all of the late demand for this fruit will be met this year. The #1 grade processing volume is currently running around 2 million pounds per week statewide. At this time last year there were 6-8 million pounds being generated per week.