Ataulfo orchards bloom and we untwist season start intel
This week I have been fielding a lot of questions about when the Mexican mangoes will start up again. It’s common for me to get these emails and calls this time of year. People get confused and excited. I think as it gets colder everywhere we all want the Mexican mango season to happen sooner, after all it signals warmer weather here.
The bad news is we are still a few months away so wait we must. The good news is the weather thus far has been great, lots of water filling the orchards and water tables. It’s way too early for us to release much of any serious information, or actual crop reports. Year after year, after year the weather in January dictates everything for the start. Climate change in particular makes gauging start times tough, especially the beginning of a season/region.
A pause for appreciation for those that feed us, organically
I learned about gratitude as a little girl. It was not taught to me in school or by my parents or by my country. It was taught to me by Nicaraguans. Poor Nicaraguans to be specific, who had nothing much of physical, monetary, or economic value in their possessions. At the time, mid to later 1980’s these average Nicaraguans were struggling to find food and basic necessities amidst embargoes, wars, political power struggles, corruption, CIA involvement, cocaine trafficking and more. My family, my father and four brothers just happened to be living alongside them, in similar circumstances, the struggling to find necessities part. I paid attention then, as I do now and noticed early on that despite having, what I considered, from my viewpoint as a young girl coming from a poor family in Los Angeles, nothing- they were happy. They were generous and above all they had gratitude. It took me a while to understand this formula, but eventually it’s one that is now etched in my bones and part of my blood. A way of being that I couldn’t stop being attracted to. The attraction, to living around those with immense gratitude is what lead me to farmers, small organic farmers to be exact.
If you haven’t worked in marketing, you may not be able to empathize with how pressurized it can become – to have to constantly churn out new, creative (and IMO hopefully) useful content. In the culinary education world that means new recipe ideas and techniques to simplify them, giving consumers what they want and need but may not, as of yet, even be aware they do. In produce that means tips on storage, handling, and usage, as well as flavor profiles, textures, and a fruit or a vegetable’s unique quirks. If you’re like me and want content to be genuine, it’s even more difficult. Mango-infused Thanksgiving ideas are never easy to come by, but I think once again we managed to pull it off.
We at Crespo Organic Kitchen are well-known for our multi-faceted work with mangoes. We work on the commodity side as well as the kitchen side, producing useful content that resonates with our many fans and eaters from around the globe. Ideas often start out as complex, but as culinary professionals we must turn them into easily executable concepts that any skill level can tackle. Most importantly we don’t want to just lazily toss mangoes into any old recipe; we want to be thoughtful and also clear that mangoes do not work in very dish.
Empaque Don Jorge expands the season with late varietal trials
There are always “good” and “bad” parts to any growing season. If you ask most growers (including the Crespo’s) “was this a good season or a bad one?”, most will say that it was not a great one. The entire season was ripe with problems, mostly the kind that cost more money and bring in less.
Mango farmers had to work twice as hard for a lot less money this season overall. The drought caused significant problems on the growing side and customers, especially wholesalers and distributors struggled with labor and logistics issues, making the distribution process often hellish and any normal quality defect, even slight cosmetic ones, impossible to maneuver through.
McAllen enjoys the last fruits of our labor while Nogales embraces a bit more propaganda
Here is the brief take-away from this article: Hot water baths are not bad, and untreated fruit is not better. The end of the season is complex for all- let facts be your guide.
For a handful of us who grow extensively in the El Rosario area during the Sinaloa season, mango supplies can often be extended all the way into the first week of September. While other broker-sellers move to the untreated Mochis zone (which jump up significantly in price and size), we can stay longer in lower prices and smaller fruit. Naturally, this benefits our volume-driven sellers a great deal, knowing most customers have a price point they must adhere to in order to capture sales. In some regions, consumers will only pay so much for a mango; this is particularly true in the Midwest and on the east coast. So, just a touch below the arbitrary untreated zone line, the Rosario region offers a micro growing region where we can do just that – provide smaller, cheaper mangoes throughout the entire month of August.
The yin and yang of seasonal rains, an abundance of complexities
Someone asked me recently why I haven’t posted anything under my Secrets & Lies category for a while. Most of the truth of my answer was I forgot about it. But buried in that answer is also, I (like everyone) sometimes don’t like to talk about the truth because its complex and I fear people won’t understand, will take it the wrong way or use it against me. When you also speak on behalf of a brand or a big mango system, it can be frightening to put out hard truths.
The lack of communicating existing or potential quality problems is one of the biggest industry secrets and lies there is, as if burying these truths helps anyone. So here I am being the risktaker/bettermaker that I am. Here to not alarm us, but put us into a proactive stance, where information is the key to the successful remainder of the Mexican mango season.
We have been in the midst of a serious drought that has brought a multitude of complexities to the entire Mexican mango season thus far. Those complexities seem likely to continue as seasonal rains have started, pounding the current Sinaloa growing sub regions (around El Rosario and Esquinapa) with lots of water over the last few weeks.
While it’s true that any amount of rain always brings some drought relief, it can also bring with other problems, especially when the pendulum swings to totally to the other side as it has going from no rain to lots at once.
Advice and visuals from our favorite Summer Mango Mania partners
As we head deeper into summertime and peak Mexican mango season, the nation is ample with #MuchosMangoes. We’ve made certain that in all our key cities and regions throughout the nation (& Canada) fruit is arriving with exceptional color, taste and quality and consumer price points are exceptionally low.
We have also affirmed that most displays are brimming with Crespo Organic recipe cards, posters and banners. Each year the growing excitement over mangoes continues and retailers, small and large, all over the country, continue to build bigger, bolder organic mango displays priced perfectly for consumers. All of us working together for the common goal of selling a lot of mangoes…… spreading #MangoJoy!
Consumer engagement in learning to choose, store, cut and use mangoes has been at an all-time high and we take the job of equipping consumers with useful mango education seriously. Our prowess to enlighten consumers with multiple in-store and digitalplatforms, as well as through live demos, FREE- Online cooking classes and even classes for the little Crespo niñosoffers something for everyone. (See the full calendar here.)
What is Crespo Summer Mango Mania, you might ask? It’s the collision point between our peak production time in Nayarit & Sinaloa and the height of consumer demand, better known as; SUMMER TIME! For two months, in the heat of the summer, between June and August, while orchards are most copious, Mango Mania frenzy ensues! Crespo Organic Summer Mango Mania desires to Educate, Excite Engage and Entice mango consumers with sweet price points and juicy sales, delicious culinary and educational events and a general spreading of useful, relevant mango education.
We offer a full spectrum of creative and reliable resources and experiences, designed to stimulate, and entice purchases at the store level, as well as educate and arouse consumers digitally and in person. It’s essentially the spreading of #MangoJoy and the building of loyal mango eaters.
Social Media Contests & Giveaways
Mango Tips & Tricks
Demos and Tastings
Recipes and Recipe Videos
All brought to you by the Crespo Organic Kitchen, which is essentially the test kitchen for all things Crespo Organic, managed by me (Nissa) and my company Ger-Nis Culinary & Herb Center; a small food education, sales & marketing and media company; specializing in local, organic, fairly traded, sustainable food and agricultural. Ger-Nis supports small global growers and organic brands around the world in with a bevy of services, skills and connections.
Every Monday & Thursday we are givin’ stuff away, but you gotta work a little for it!
Social media giveaways is a fun way for us to get more consumer engagement on our social media pages where we not only share about all the fun #CrespoOrganic #SummerMangoMania #MuchosMangoesevents and experiences but where we share useful relevant mango education daily. Everything from “OurStory”- the story of who we are and how we came to be, or “Our Process”, following mangoes through the 72-hour packing process or “Our Home” which shares the details of main packing house, Empaque Don Jorge, the largest hydrothermal packhouse in Latina America.
Recipes, how to’s and lots of general fun, we have it all in our social media and for us its simply another way to do the important work we do that supports the mango growing, packing and shipping process- the mango education. Connecting the dots between farmers and mango eaters. We are the only company out there offering a full spectrum of USEFUL mango education and we take the job seriously and also know people like FREE STUFF.
So for the month of July hope over to @CrespoOrganic on Facebook and Instagram and win and learn!
Find us boating around Table Rock Lake giving way #mangojoy and free mangoes
What better way to get to know our new home than to boat around giving out mangoes, Crespo mango tree t-shirts and more!
We moved the Crespo Organic Kitchen moved to Table Rock Lake inBlue Eye, MO last fall along with Nissa! It’s just completed a total kitchen remodel and is ready for making new recipes, videos and more. But we are still trying to get to know the area and the people so we figured why not boat around and see what the locals are doing and give them some of our #mangojoy in the form of free mangoes, mango popsicles, mangoes on a stick and some Crespo mango SWAG: T Shirts, hats and totes!
Under The Mango Tree is a sweet spot, where I, a long time mango industry crackerjack, share everything I know. A place to find mango centric, agricultural, food and culture knowledge and a few juicy industry secrets and lies.