Not uncommon at this time of year pecan prices have fallen as growers bring the crop to market, and supplies are abundant for the moment.
Over the past year we have seen offerings pickup throughout the season as supplies dwindled, but now that the new crop is coming on strong buyers have been sitting out of the market and making lowball offers in an effort to pick up some discounted pecans in the commercial market.
Seasoned growers say this is not uncommon, while China purchases more crop from Mexico, US growers are limited to brokers and shellers in the commercial wholesale market and as one growers puts it “this is the game that is played”. What he is referring to is to the way many of the pecans are sold in the open market. We have many new growers in the market and this seems to work well from time to time.
Each year when the new crop comes in, buyers are much better coordinated than the thousands of pecan growers scattered across the southern US and many growers don’t want to store their crop and have no idea how to market their crop, so they will wind up taking whatever offers come in.
Once one or two growers does this, it helps to set market prices much lower than they would otherwise be. Demand for pecans is still strong, but most growers don’t shell or value add to their crop in any way and that will limit the buyers available.
Grower organizations have been doing a pretty job at finding new markets but commercial pecan buyers aren’t just sitting around every corner waiting to purchase, most customers require education and nurturing to develop into viable outlets.
November is nearly over and harvest in the southeast is moving along well but farmgate prices are currently low and most seasoned growers have opted to send their pecans to cold storage, once the inventories already in the supply chain begin to drop, farmgate prices tend to rise.