Vegetables and Pulses Outlook
According to USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) August 28 Vegetables report, the 2014 contract production of the four major processing vegetables (tomatoes, sweet corn, snap beans, and green peas) is projected to total 18.2 million short tons, up 14 percent from last year.
Despite increased contract production, early-summer shipment levels for many fresh vegetables are lower in 2014, as compared with previous years. Between May and June 2014, volume shipments were down 20 percent relative to the same period in 2013. Between July and August of 2014 the Consumer Price Index for fresh market vegetables fell by nearly 4 percent; the Producer Price Index fell by more than 19 percent.
Reflecting higher yield, U.S. mushroom (Agaricus and others) sales volume reached 900 million pounds in 2013/14 marketing year (July-June), up 1 percent from 2012/13. The value of mushroom sales reached a new high of $1.12 billion in 2013/14.
Potato production for 2013 is 28.1 million hundredweight (cwt) lower than 2012, due to area harvested declines, despite an average 5-cwt per acre yield increase. Area harvested in 2014 is up just 1.4 percent from 2013 estimates. Market prices reflect reduced supply in 2013 and support a 12.3 percent year-to-year increase as well as a record-high value of production at $4.22 billion.
Area planted to dry edible beans in 2014 increased by 23.4 percent over 2013 figures with sizeable area gains noted for baby lima, cranberry, black, and navy beans. Dry edible bean acres have also increased in 2014 to 921,000 acres. Area planted to lentils has decline by 12 percent in 2014.