Crop News

Surging Sweet Corn Prices


United States

Green Pea market very short. The early summer heat took its toll on the Green Pea crop and most processors are 20% to 50% below budget. Extreme heat with temperatures between 105 – 117 degrees made it difficult to keep up with the harvest and many processors had to leave their peas in the ground. Look for replacing contracts with B and C grade peas. Dry land pea fields suffered the most. The pea market officially remains tight with prices on the rise.

Temperatures in Eastern WA and Oregon have finally settled down with a more normal range of 82 to 90 degrees F. Recent corn yields, and quality are being reported as average, however the first part of the season reported lower than normal yields. The extreme heat in June caused stress to the plants and when this happens the plants stop growing. Many processing plants experienced “green out” meaning the corn is not ready to harvest due to stoppage in growth. To date we are about 60% to 70% through our corn season here in the Pacific Northwest. The market is very tight on sweet corn, with demand domestically and globally very high. Most processors are off the market on kernel and cob but those who are not are naming their price.

Potatoes do not like heat!! The extreme heat in the Pacific Northwest in June and the continued warm weather has affected the potato harvest in the Pacific Northwest. The Colombia Basin potato area is in peak harvest and the heat has lowered the solids. High heat causes discoloration inside the potato as well as a lower number of tubers developing. Researchers have found that potato growth will shut down with temperatures above 95 degrees so the weeks of temperatures over 100 degrees in our potato growing regions here in the PNW has affected potato growth. Yields are down. As an example, usually, plants average about 15 potatoes per plant and this year we are seeing about 7 to 8. As well the potatoes are smaller size. Processors are concerned that there will not be enough potatoes to cover finished product demand. The high heat also causes weeds and insects and there is currently a shortage of insecticide.

Fruit growers in the Pacific Northwest (Oregon and Washington) are reporting Raspberry yields may be off by 30% to 50%. We are hearing blackberry yields may be down by 80%. The Raspberry harvest in Washington State is now completed with raspberry crumble volumes limited due to the smaller size of the crop and also the smaller size of the fruit which reduces the crumbling.

Blueberry season is now ongoing and current reports are that the crop will be reduced by 20% to 40% depending on the area and grower. All in all, the berry crops in the PNW have been hit hard by the heat and we expect the frozen berry market to remain very firm moving forward. Contracts will most likely be prorated and prices increased.

Cherries which are already short in Michigan due to frost and freeze conditions in April/May, will now be short in the Pacific Northwest growing areas due to the heat. Cherries at the top of the trees have shriveled and high temperatures are known to cause the fruit to temporarily stop cell division and that could prevent them from reaching full size.

Prices for all berry fruits worldwide are up and expected to continue to rise due to low inventories coming into the new season and smaller crops this season globally. Covid is still an issue and labor continues to increase and is in short supply.

Midwest area peas are estimated to be about 10% less in yield this season due to hot weather. The season is now completed.

Midwest Sweet corn harvest is ongoing with high heat and little rain. Some are reporting lower yields this season but overall say performance has been okay. Some bunching is expected in the next weeks, so a few processors are very busy trying to run as much corn through the factories as possible.

Midwest carrots are showing some signs of stress due from the continued warm and dry weather.


Harvesting of Broccoli and Cauliflower in the Bajio Valley has now stopped as Mexico’s quarantine becomes effective in May/June. New season broccoli and cauliflower will commence in October/November in the Bajio Valley, Mexico. It is now rainy season; however, factories are running using product coming in from Northern farms.

Avocado season in Mexico runs July through end May. A freeze this past winter could affect the volume coming out of the season later this summer. U.S. consumption continues to increase and prices for fresh and frozen avocado is expected to increase going forward.


New Season broccoli harvest has commenced with quality and yields good.


Fruit season in Chile has been very challenging. A devasting storm at the end of January damaged crops. Grape crops were particularly hit hard, however, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries also suffered much damage. Price are up, and inventories will be very tight moving forward. It is estimated that damages from this storm will be over US$150 million. In addition, and more recently four major growing regions in Chile is experiencing ongoing drought conditions. Last week the Chilean government declared a state of emergency in which US$10 million has been set aside to help farmers in these hard-hit areas. Current prices on all berry fruits are up due to Chile’s crop challenges, drought, lack of labor, and high demand worldwide.

Asparagus season should commence this month.


Avocado season is ongoing. Yields and quality expected to be good, however labor costs will increase prices. Mango prices have risen further due to small fruit size and dry weather conditions resulting in a reduced crop. The season is now completed, and prices will remain firm. Asparagus season will commence this month.


Green peas and beans remain very short in Europe with no relief in sight. Heavy rain and hail have hit most of Europe and crops (peas, corn, beans) are struggling as fields are too wet to harvest. Both Belgium and the Netherlands are having difficulties with producing their crops and expectation is that we will see a 20% or more reduction in yields on many products.

A 2021 spring freeze which struck across Europe has damaged most of the stone fruit crop there. Cold and rain in Serbia has delayed blackberries, raspberry and cherry crops by about 14 days. Both Poland and Serbia will see reduction in their berry fruit yields for the 2021 season. Serbian raspberry crop may see a 30,000 ton reduction compared to previous years and prices for blackberries have tripled.


Lower volumes of raw material sweet corn being delivered to factories and tin plate prices have risen again. Some are expecting canned sweet corn prices to be adjusted upward.


Edamame and Mukimame are being processed and should be winding down at the end of this month.

Broccoli and cauliflower now being planted for the Fall/Winter harvest.

Asparagus prices are higher this year due to reduced acreage, reduced volume, and higher transportation costs. Chinese cherry crop has been hurt by heavy rain and expected yields are low with numerous split fruit.

































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