Ataulfo’s offer up a mega does of #MangoJoy amidst serious season complexities
The onset of the Mexican mango season is anticipated to bring significant complexity and is expected to persist as such for several months. First up, as always Mexico’s yellow slipper, the Ataulfo mango. A beloved consumer favorite and one of the fastest growing mango varietals in the US market.
As Ataulfo mangoes are picked and packed and transported up Mexico and across the border to retailers nationwide, they navigate through the challenges of a turbulent Peruvian season. Unfortunately, the Peruvian season, impacted severely by merciless El Niño weather during blooming stages, has not yielded any sufficient volume, leaving large empty pipelines throughout the global mango industry. Traditionally, the US market during this period is flooded with lower-priced Peruvian fruit, but the current scenario sees Peruvian growers struggling with volumes and unable to meet even a portion of the worldwide demand, leading to chaos with farmers searching for the highest bidder in markets across Europe, Asia, and the USA.
The challenging Peruvian situation in the US market puts immense pressure on the commencement of the Mexican season. Retailers find themselves not only attempting to bridge the gap but also facing total panic for the upcoming months when mangoes are typically the most promotable fruit. Contracts are in disarray, and a veil of silence shrouds the realities south of the border, contributing to unprecedented market confusion.
Mexican mango season starts slowly amidst an empty pipeline…..
I’m back from a beach break in Puerto Rico, a much needed respite before another Mexican mango season begins. This break proved to be a wise decision, considering the anticipated complexity of the looming mango season, perhaps even more complex than usual and mostly just at the onset.
In my last crop report, “A Christmas Mango Teaser,” my message was a mix of positive news alongside Roberto’s warning about the strong winds prevailing at that time. Many expected wind damage resulting in some gaps, prompting us to wait before assessing the situation.
Unfortunately, the wind did cause damage by dislodging blooms and even some set fruit, creating numerous small gaps from orchard to orchard. This will impact volumes at the onset and during the initial weeks of the season. Essentially, supplies will be limited for most of February but are expected to increase and stabilize as we progress into March.
Generally jolly good orchard news, a sprinkle of bah humbug
& my best holiday mango recipes
Roberto Crespo, a member of the #HermanosCrespos “band” or what I consider the lead singer of our south, is currently and like usual, deeply rooted in the soils of Oaxaca and Chiapas preparing for the season start up. This week he is sharing some encouraging updates direct from our Mexican mango orchards down there, which feels like the best Christmas news ever! He sprinkles a little bah humbug on our festive mood, reporting of some serious wind currently swirling the orchards, noting it could be concerning for fruit supply farther into the season. I will report back with my usual New Year/ New Season Mexican Mango Predictions next week with more details from Roberto. Consider this just a little teaser of Christmas hope before we all break for the holiday. Today, I want mostly to sprinkle a bit of #MangoJoy on us for the Mexican mango season ahead with the scarcity of positive offshore organic mango news, I thought some flashes of good news would be a nice change.
Plus, an additional NEW packhouse, Bola de Oro opens in Oaxaca
Back in 2019, just prior to the mango season, El Grupo Crespo opened Empaque Don Jorge II (EDJII) in Ocozocoautla de Espinosa, Chiapas, or – as the locals call it – Coita. It was the Crespo family’s second proprietary mango packhouse, plus several hundred supporting hectares of organic mango orchards. The expanded mango volumes and increased packing outputs allowed the family business to expand and grow. This season El Grupo starts their 2023 mango programs with even more volume, more capacity and more varietals. It’s exciting for me to witness their growth and see the family rewarded with recognition from the industry, retailers, wholesalers and processors.
It’s beginning to look at lot like a prosperous Mexican Mango Season
It’s that time of the year again when you all forget about fruits and vegetables amidst all the holiday hubbub, and also the time of the year when I begin thinking excessively about mangoes as we begin to prepare for the upcoming Mexican Mango Season!
I’m not going to lie, I get giddy with anticipation of all the mangoes to come, usually cooking up something mango-centric to ring in the holiday season. This year it was my Mango Pork Mole & Christmas Tamales and a very special Mexican Mezcal Pechuga Mango Milk Punch. My excitement for mangoes had already been jostled more than normal for this time of year since fresh back from a recent trip to Egypt where I had been pleasantly surprised by all the mangoes.