California: Navel orange season sees great prices

The 2021-22 navel orange season wrapped up last week. Prices have gone up to nearly $25 per carton. Reportedly, last week, the navel crop was 100% harvested and haulers now expect to finish shipping remaining inventories by the end of June.

Prices for all sizes are strong at over $23 per carton. That compares to an average of under $17 per carton last season. The popular 48 sized orange, one of the largest sizes, is fetching an average of $24.90 per carton this season compared to $16.25 in 2020-21 and just $11.75 in 2019-20. A carton of oranges holds about 40 pounds depending on the size of the fruit.

Looking ahead to the 2022-23 season, industry experts project the next navel crop will be of an average size. Meanwhile, the Valencia season is in full swing and 31% harvested.  The average domestic price for the week was just over $19. The market is characterized as strong. Demand is picking up on larger sizes.  Demand for smaller sizes is starting to fall off which is typical with schools closing for the summer break. The price is well above average, but mostly below last year’s strong showing when consumers were eager for Vitamin C.


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