Foodservice Down, But ‘Brisk’ Fresh Avocado Market Helping

Brian German Fruits & Vegetables

A ‘brisk’ fresh avocado market is making up for some issues due to COVID-19.


The order for Americans to stay at home to help slow down the spread of the Coronavirus came while the California avocado season was full throttle. “That was certainly the case. We had an earlier start than we had anticipated. The early market conditions prior to the COVID-19 crisis were good,” California Avocado Commission President Tom Bellamore said. “Our industry is fortunate. We are providing a product that consumers still want and are looking for in the store. Week by week, shipments have been good, and we think that will continue.”

The industry is reporting a fast market right now for fresh avocados, and Bellamore said that’s making up for restaurants limiting buying during social distancing. “We understand from the packers that retail sales are brisk and seem to off-setting some of the declines on the foodservice side,” he said. “Foodservice is still taking product, but as they shift to takeout as opposed to dine-in operations, the demand is lower than it would typically be.”

Bellamore noted that packinghouses have also been deemed necessary operations and continue to work under safeguards. “The packinghouses have made some changes in their operations trying to manage the packing and still keep some distance between workers…We understand there have been extra shifts and different hours to do their best to keep their workers safe.” 

Listen to the report.

Specialty Crops News ~ 03.26.2020
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Taylor Hillman