Catania Worldwide Details Tight Lime Market
ONTARIO, CANADA - While our relationship with Mother Nature may not always be categorized as “stable,” it is rich beyond words. The ebb and flow of weather patterns always keeps us on our toes, and time-tested companies like Catania Worldwide are well versed in these changing tides. As the lime market undergoes a significant shift, I got the chance to talk with Matt Catania, Sales Manager.
“For the past few months, the lime market has been as tight as in recent years, specifically on larger-sized fruit,” said Matt. “The 110/150 size represents less than 10 percent of what is coming off of the trees, with the 175 size representing not much more than 15 percent of what is coming off of the trees. For the back half of March and the beginning of April, small fruit is becoming more readily available, specifically with the southern Mexico areas of Veracruz starting to produce large amounts of fruit in the 230/250-size range.”
The industry is seeing low yield on limes in Mexico, which is typical for this time of year. It generally lasts for a month or two, and this year’s climate presented challenges that could affect the quantity and size of the fruit into May. Catania reports that the quality of its limes has not been an issue. Some of the main growing areas have experienced small amounts of rain, but for the most part, specifically during this new crop, availability and size have been the only concerns.
Matt explained that climate change affects the weather in many areas of Mexico, which has changed the harvest statistics. In the month of February, the cold weather affected the bloom on the trees. The effects of that cold weather will be reflected in the crop until early- to mid-May, contributing to low yield and high market prices.
“During March, we have seen FOBs push the $50 mark during certain periods, specifically on the 100 sizes (110,150,175) with the smaller fruit (230/250) hanging in around the low $40s, and the 200 size somewhere in the middle. However, specifically after the holiday ‘holy weeks’ in Mexico, we expect to see small fruit dip back down, while we expect larger fruit to relatively hold its market price for the early to late parts of May, before we see more fruit start to become available across the board,” Matt added. “We are seeing a price increase in limes from where we were at during March and April of last year.”
As we know, the industry stops for no one, and Catania continues to maintain a competitive level of customer service throughout periods such as this when we see tighter markets.
“We want to point out how hard our growers, production teams, and sales staff are working to meet our customers' needs despite the market conditions and on top of the challenges we're facing due to COVID-19,” Matt concluded.
As we continue to keep our eyes on changing trends in the lime market, keep reading the latest reports from ANUK.