September 28, 2013

Fresno County Raisin grower gets the job done.

Raisin Harvest Continues Under Perfect Conditons

Fresno County raisin grower Joel Mendoza picks up his crop in the typical cigarette roll and puts them in the box. It’s the important step of getting the dried grapes out of the field and into more a more protective area.

Raisin growers are still patiently waiting for a 2013 price to be called.

The Raisin Bargaining Association Board of Directors voted unanimously to support another season free from volume regulation managed by the Raisin Administrative Committee.  This would be the 4th consecutive season of 100% free tonnage for the industry. 
The Board of Directors recognizes the changes occurring in California agriculture and is confident the vast majority of the raisin industry is supportive of this concept and prepared to make the necessary adjustments to accommodate this marketing policy.

The Board of Directors also made it very clear that the Association has been in preliminary discussions with signatory packers but no offers have been put on the table. 

Any prices being mentioned at this point in time are simply speculation.  The field price for Natural Seedless raisins is $1,900 per ton.  The Board is preparing to negotiate for the new raisin crop on that basis. 

While price is the critical element in the negotiations, terms and conditions will be very important as RBA must continue to work with our processors to make certain financing remains viable for the increased value of our raisins. 

Payment terms will be an important area of negotiation as we must be prepared to take the necessary steps to protect the $590 million farm gate revenue that has been established this past year.

Finally, members need to be prepared for a 2013 field price agreement that may be announced later than the past few seasons.  There will be an adequate inventory as of August 1st to meet sales requirements through October which may influence our ability to reach any agreement.