Westlake Weekly Update 9.30.20
Featured Item: Knutzen Farms
In a world that moves and changes so quickly, it is refreshing and remarkable that a dream envisioned over 100 years ago by an immigrant from Denmark, continues as a successful family-owned and operated agribusiness. I’m referring to Knutzen Family Farms which is located in the lovely fertile area of Skagit Valley in Washington. Under the watchful eye of the Knutzen family, the salty sea air mixes with the soil and produces superior quality white, red, and yellow potatoes.
This family-run farm is six generations strong! Family is key to this business and why they are known for their famous specialty spuds! Today it’s overseen by the fifth and sixth generations… and counting. To them, the 11th commandment is “Thou shall not sell the farm,” according to Roger Knutzen. It seems like that has been instilled in each member of the family since birth. Listening to the Knutzens, you not only hear dedication, but you also feel the love in what they do. They truly believe in their purpose of bringing high-quality potatoes to your table. Behind all that hard work and dedication is a passion for protecting the farmland.
People in the business throw around the buzzword “sustainability” quite a lot. But the Knutzens just see it as good practice and have been doing it for too many years to count. One way they protect the soil and crop health is by growing “cover crops.” These crops, such as mustard, grass, and clover, to name a few, are grown with the sole purpose of improving soil health. Adding these cover crops back into the dirt replenishes important nutrients, slows erosion, and also increases the biodiversity. The Knutzens are a family that walks the walk.
They’ve maintained the vision of being good stewards of the land and preserving it for future generations. Being family-run allows them to really care for the potato from its earliest stages as a seed, through the whole process of planting, growing, packing, and even marketing. There is a true sense of “family pride” that the Knutzens all possess and have passed on to all of their employees.
When you’re lucky enough to have some of their world-famous Chuckanut Valley yellow, red, or white potatoes, you’ll taste the difference! You’ll also feel good supporting a family-run business that not only cares about its products but also its impact on the land they feel so proud of protecting and maintaining.
This week in citrus, we have Navel oranges available from our growers in Chile and Australia. The fruit is arriving with excellent quality and flavor. The demand has remained strong on imported navels. We expect a strong finish to the season as the last of the arrivals come in.
New crop California navel oranges are due to start by the end of October. The 2020-2021 Navel orange forecast shows at 84 million cartons. Despite being down 5% from last year, we anticipate a good start to the California citrus season.
Don’t forget Cara Caras from our growers in Australia. This fruit is one of the nicest varieties out of this area and can fill some of your shelf space. Call us for great opportunity buys. Valencia oranges continue to be in high demand. The fruit is an excellent quality in the juice and flavor department. The demand is exceeding supply on the 113s. We have some availability of 88s and larger. Pack outs at this time of year are running 40/60s fancy to choice.
They’re here, and they’re a hit! Honey tangerines have started in a big way. The fruit this year did not disappoint. It has arrived very nicely, with excellent sugar and juice content. The peak size is on the 60s, followed by the 70’s and 50s. We have a good supply of “low seed honeys” available. The opportunity is there for some great promotions in October.
Fallglo tangerines from Florida are due to start harvest this week. They are one of the larger varieties of tangerines, with a deep orange easy to peel rind. The first shipments after de-greening will be next week. The peak size being 120s, followed by the 100s and 150s. These sweet tangerine varieties are packed in 36 lb cartons. They are a wonderful option for tangerine sales out here in the west!
Our bulk W. Murcotts and Tango mandarins are finishing up. We expect to go through the end of next week. Our last container is arriving this week. Please give us a ring for remaining availability. We expect the first California mandarins (Satsumas and Clementines) are due to start by the end of October. The imported bagged mandarins have been looking and tasting great. There has been additional supply arriving from our growers in Australia and Chile, just as demand increased last week. We still have a good supply of 2lb and 3lb bags available.
Minneola tangelos are coming to the end of their season. We are so thankful to our growers in Peru and Australia for providing us with an exemplary product we were able to offer.
Our growers in Chile are winding down with lemons, but lemons have started harvesting out of the California desert and Arizona. The peak size continues on the smaller side of
the newest crop. Mexican lemons are also available and looking good! We have good availability on lemons from our various growing regions.
California grapefruit demand continues to exceed supply on the Ruby variety. The season will come to a quick end this week. Sadly, some of our growers lost supply due to the extremely high temperatures we experienced. Stay tuned as some groves are being accessed and will finalize any further availability.
Florida will begin harvest this week. Our supply will peak on the 48s and 40s. Please call us for your overall source of Florida grapefruit on the west coast.
Texas Rio Star grapefruit is just three weeks away! Stay tuned for more information on this popular variety!
Eat more berries! They are high in fiber and loaded with antioxidants, plus they make your skin look better! Just as you should eat them daily, you’re going to have to call for the day to day updates. Don’t worry…we love hearing from you!
We have bright flavorful raspberries available, as well as strawberries, blackberries, and blueberries. The strawberries are limited due to conditions up north, with a slight increase in price. Domestic Blueberries have been in light supply due to overall production. But, blackberries are becoming readily available as Mexico gets their season started.
The current production of Keitt Mangoes out of Mexico has slowed down, but Brazilian Tommy mangoes will start to fill the US. Call for sizes and availability!