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Current Position:Home » News » Agri & Animal Products » Topic

Decline in cruise ship business causes fall in US turnip demand

Zoom in font  Zoom out font Published: 2017-10-12  Views: 2
Core Tip: The supply of domestic turnips is pretty level right now.
The supply of domestic turnips is pretty level right now.

While this root vegetable, which is largely coming in from California, the Midwest (including Michigan) and New Jersey on the East Coast, is still commonly considered a winter vegetable, for soups, stews, Thanksgiving tables etc, they are a fresh vegetable and can be spotted in year-round use in salad bars.

Meanwhile, pricing doesn’t seem to be affected. “They’re holding steady and are comparable to last year,” says Roger Victory of Hudsonville, Mi.-based Victory Farms LLC. “I would expect a pretty steady harvest and improving quality as we approach fall temperatures. As far as pricing, I would expect steady pricing.”

While demand for Victory Farms' turnips is mainly from regional Midwest consumers, it’s also coming from the cruise ships—specifically the Caribbean cruise lines —which have been negatively affected by the hurricanes. "There was less business for cruise ships because of the fear of pending hurricanes," says Victory. "It caused a reduction in turnip sales for a couple weeks."

Increased interest?

That said, the market is poised for growth. “People are gaining awareness and appreciation for heirloom vegetables,” and, capitalizing on that interest, Victory has introduced a new variety of turnip - a white turnip, which has been used to add variety to the salad bars—not unlike how colorful beets or carrots have been used.

Still, it can be a taxing vegetable to grow. “One of the biggest challenges of raising turnips is the labor intensity of harvest,” says Victory. “Because of the need to prevent bruising, they must be harvested manually.”

 
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