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Tomato, pepper supplies to tighten in Nogales

Cold weather is coming to Culiacan, which could cause production issues for a variety of produce crossing in Nogales and McAllen, TX. At the same time warmer weather is expected to boost production in Florida. wear

A cool down is coming to Culiacan, Mexico this week. This time of year Culiacan is a main Mexican growing region for tomatoes, Bell peppers, cukes, eggplant, chilies, beans and squash. Most of this production crosses through Nogales with some also crossing through McAllen.

Initially nightly minimums of 49 were expected for up to a maximum of three days. The updated forecast is now predicting temperatures much lower and for a longer period of time. The cooling trend is now expected to start today and last through Wednesday, Jan. 2.  The week-long cold snap will affect production out of this area.

Tonight will be the first cold night with a minimum temperature of 46 and a maximum temp of only 78 today. We will see more or less the same max and min temps through Saturday.  On Sunday, however, we will see the temps drop to the coolest of the week with a minimum of 42 and a maximum of only 75.  Monday through Wednesday of next week will see minimum temps between 45 and 48, and maximum temps in the upper 70s.  It won’t be until Thursday, Jan. 3 that temps will finally rise a few degrees with maximums back in the 80s and minimums in the 50s.

These predicted temperatures are for the city of Culiacan.  Once you get out of the city and into the farms the temps might be a few degrees cooler.

These temperatures are probably not cold enough to damage the plants, but it will definitely slow down the ripening process of tomatoes and colored Bells along will all other commodities coming out of this area.  Look for supplies of all products from this area to tighten starting late this week.  By Monday of next week Nogales might be in short supply on inventories and prices could be on the rise.

As Culiacan is cooling down, on the other side of the continent things are heating up.  Florida is about to begin a week-long heat wave starting tomorrow and lasting through Jan. 2.  From Arcadia and Plant City down through Immokalee and Belle Glade and all the way south to Homestead, the main growing regions of Florida will see warm temps perfect for the production of vegetables.  The regions of Arcadia, Belle Glade, Immokalee and Plant City will all see high temps in the mid-80s and lows in the mid-60s through Tuesday, Jan. 1.  Homestead will see high temperatures in the mid 80s as well, but the low temps will be in low 70s through Saturday and then in the high 60s through Wednesday, Jan 2.

These warm temps should boost production of crops coming from these regions. 

Things will change in Florida on Thursday, Jan. 3 as temperatures begin to cool again with high temps in the 70s and lows in the 50s. There is also a slight chance of rain in Florida Jan. 3 and 4.

The main Persian lime-growing region of Martinez de la Torre, Veracruz will see some cooler temperatures starting the first of the year.  There is a good chance of rain Jan. 1-4 with high temps in the 60s and lows in the mid-50s, which could slow production just a bit.

The Weathermelon app offers consolidated lists of global growing regions for each commodity; a 10-day detail forecast for each region; current radar maps (U.S. only); estimated harvest start/end dates for each commodity; monthly average high/low temps for each region; and custom daily alerts for temperature, precipitation and severe weather based on 10-day forecasts.

(David Robidoux is a co-founder Weathermelon)