California Avocado Commission Reports Post-Hurricane Update; Jeff Oberman Comments
IRVINE, CA - Growers across California are showcasing their strong resilience following the recent Tropical Storm Hilary and a moderate earthquake in the Ojai area. As the California Avocado Commission reported, the avocado category is seeing minimal impact as most of the fruit was picked before the storm.
“This year’s crop of premium California avocados is about 90 percent harvested,” said California Avocado Commission President Jeff Oberman. “Fortunately there have been no reports of damage due to the Ojai earthquake, however certain growing regions received as much as six inches of rain in one day. Farmers will need time for the groves to dry out to fully assess the impact of this rare tropical storm.”
As Oberman went on to note, this season has had both its challenges and rewards; while growers welcomed more rain than expected—which is beneficial to the health of the trees—many had to brave tough market conditions and below-normal temperatures during the early and peak season. Peak availability occurred from April through July for the 2023 season, but some groves have fruit still to be picked, a press release explained.
“California avocado growers’ resilience is inspiring,” said Oberman. “They are committed to building and maintaining a sustainable California avocado industry by using environmentally friendly farming practices, ensuring worker well-being, contributing to healthy communities, and maintaining economic viability. We expect the remaining crop to be available for retailers and foodservice operators who have chosen to feature it for the Labor Day holiday.”
As the organization reports, late-season market conditions have improved, though the recent storms had the potential to bring more challenges to CA growers.
Next season’s crop has already experienced its bloom and set stages. Growers are currently evaluating if this recent storm will have any impact on next year’s harvest.
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