Growers of eggplants in Mexico are enjoying a good season this year. Rain and cloudy skies are the only factors preventing product from reaching the market at the moment. Mexico has had an active tropical storm season, which has created difficult conditions for harvesting. But those producers in a position to protect their crop are looking at a positive season.
Pedro Balderrama, of Arizona-based SunFed, said that their eggplant season has been a very good one. He attributes the protection over the crops as well as strong demand, for the positive season. "This season is looking great. There is some rain at the moment which has slowed harvesting, but the plants grown under the protective covering are healthy and of good size," said Balderrama. "In the last two weeks, the Pacific region of Mexico was hit with tropical storm Lidia, causing rain in our growing regions and now we are faced with Katia in the Atlantic. Due to the various hurricanes, rain has slowed down production causing supply to drop and increase prices."
Plans for year-round varieties
The demand for their eggplant has prompted SunFed to expand their operations and aims to provide year-round coverage. Balderrama observed that their expansion in Texas was a success for the company and now new growing regions are on the horizon. "Our Eggplant varieties have really taken off and we are confident that our eggplant in Texas will go through November. The quality of the product is great and that is drawing demand from our customers. This is demonstrated by the fact that we are selling out every season," Balderrama continued. "We have now started to prepare for our Nogales season which will run from October through the summer with the aim to produce year-round supply for our customers."
SunFed have also been growing organic eggplants and are looking at refining and expanding that market too. Balderrama explained, "This season, we produced an organic eggplant line, and we are currently working hard to expand our program."
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Publication date: 9/11/2017