Lettuce/Romaine Market Conditions Update

Unseasonable warm temperatures in Yuma, Arizona, are having a negative effect on quality and yields of iceberg lettuce and romaine. Crops in the desert growing region are bolting (going to seed), and our growers are harvesting 10-15 days ahead of schedule to prevent further crop loss. This is reducing yields in the short term, and may cause supply shortages later in the Yuma growing season.

Lettuce showing "Christmas tree" seeder
Lettuce showing “Christmas tree” seeder

Iceberg lettuce size and weights are fluctuating, and seeder continues to be an issue. We are seeing internal salt and pepper, insect damage, and the beginning phases of weak tip on the outer leaves of the product. Quality is marginal to fair at best.

Romaine is maintaining fair quality with no internal issues. We are seeing seeder issues ranging from 3-7” in some heads. Harvesting crews are cutting higher on the plant to reduce seeder, resulting in reduced yields.

These quality and yield issues are expected to continue through the end of November. We encourage you to check back often for updates, as we monitor this ongoing supply situation.