(Jan. 9) A cold snap that lingered in Arizona and Mexico for nearly two weeks in late December continues to cause some gaps and quality issues in leafy greens, radishes, broccoli and cauliflower.

“Some of our mustard and turnip greens, which we grow around here, were affected,” said Rich McDonald, business development director for Everkrisp Vegetables Inc., Phoenix. “We had one morning that registered 24 degrees, which wouldn’t have been too bad, but when you have two weeks of freezing weather every night eventually you have a negative effect, and we lost some of our flat mustard, curly mustard and turnip greens, and there was some pealing in the bok choy.”

Everkrisp also grows in Mexico, and as the cold weather settled there, McDonald said plant growth was slowed.

“Because it didn’t get as cold there we didn’t see the adverse affect on quality, but the volume diminished,” he said. “Our green onions are 60% of normal this time of year, as is cilantro. Radish production slowed down so much we were picking them at 45 days rather than 53 days, so they’re very small and chaffed.”

He said by Jan. 14 production would be close to normal levels. Meanwhile, he said, the markets are high.

“You’ve got $20 market on green onions and cilantro, a $9-10-for-two-dozen radish market,” he said. “Those are double or triple what they’d normally be because volume is still down, so it’s not over yet.”

McDonald said Jan. 9 that production in Mexico would be close to normal by the following week.

“Up here we have new sets of greens we can go into next week,” he said. “They’ll be a little on the small side, but the quality will be there and we’ll be able to ship.”

A Salinas broker who requested anonymity also said Jan. 9 that production of leafy greens, broccoli and cauliflower should be back to normal by the week of Jan. 14.

“It hasn’t adjusted back yet,” he said. “But I think the markets are at their peak.”

Gary Andreasian, vice president of sales for Growers Express LLC, Salinas, Calif., said the major affect from the cold weather has been some blistering and peeling on leaf lettuce and some iceberg.

“There have been some issues with quality, but production hasn’t really been hurt,” he said. “It has not put us in a situation where if we don’t cut the lettuce we’ll lose it, so we’re not under any pressure to cut it in any big numbers.”