NOGALES, Ariz. — Greenhouse and field-grown bell peppers are under way out of west Mexico, and growers predicted good quality this season.
Heavy rain in some areas when it came time to transplant the peppers resulted in some delays, said Rob Soto, sales manager at Sucasa Produce. Nonetheless, he anticipated good-quality product.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported that 50,698 10,000-pound units of bell peppers crossed through Nogales during the 2009-10 season.
Sucasa expected its first bell peppers by late November or early December, with green peppers coming out of fields in Sinaloa and colored peppers shipping from greenhouses in Jalisco.
The company should have bell peppers until mid-March.
The Culiacan, Sinaloa-based green bell pepper deal from Ciruli Bros. LLC, Rio Rico, was scheduled to start in mid-November, said partner Chris Ciruli.
The company will ship more shade house green bell peppers this year and even more next year. About 10% of Ciruli Bros.’ green bell peppers are shade house grown.
“The chains are asking to see more of the shade house green bell peppers than open field,” he said.
Most of the shade house-grown peppers are extra large, which is what supermarket chains expect, he said.
Colored bell peppers also were scheduled to start in mid-November, he said.
All of the company’s colored bell peppers, which are grown from a different kind of seed, are grown in shade houses.
“We will be up on colored peppers,” Ciruli said.
The firm’s largest grower has increased plantings of all three colors — red, yellow and orange — and the company added another growing deal in Los Mochis, Sinaloa.
Delays could push back the start of the bell pepper deal that usually starts around Dec. 10 for Del Campo Supreme Inc. until Dec. 19, said Martin Ley, vice president.
Grower Alliance LLC in Rio Rico received its first chili peppers around Oct. 20, on schedule, and should have them into December, said partner George Quintero Jr.