Market Notes June 16th, 2022



   You can’t unbake a potato. You can cool them, wash them, freeze them, dehydrate them, fry them, boil them, steam them, and sauté them, but there is no technology for unbaking them. When temperatures are over 100 degrees the ground gets hot, potatoes literally bake. So the semi-baked potatoes are dug and cooled, then run and packed. And they look good, for about a day or two, but by the time they reach their destination there is damage that could not be seen when run or packed.  This is the situation with our current grower. The only thing they could possibly do is store the potato until the damage is apparent and then run them.  Not every potato is touched by the heat, but the process is time consuming, expensive, and there is no guarantee.  In a hot market (no pun intended) that process is not likely. We think it is best to avoid this product as it will cause trouble throughout the chain. We do have an alternative, mixed fingerlings!  Another grower has just started with organic mixed fingerlings.  This is new crop that is beautiful, affordable and offer the same logistics as we were doing with the yellows. There is a 48 hour notice required and we think it is the best bet for fingerling potatoes until our next crop begins in early July. For more information the organic fingerling mix, please contact your culinary rep.


While the specialty potato market, herb market, foraged mushroom market, and pepper market are all going crazy, there is at least one market that is in great shape.  Specialty greens are thriving, and the season is a peak of perfection. Baby kale and baby arugula are holding up well and look perfect, frisee blanching is very strong, baby head lettuce is stunning, and along with beautiful mixes, all the components are available separately. Along with the beauty, the cool nights give these baby greens some strength so they can survive long rides.  Prices (quiet) have not gone up like everything else so greens should start to see more center of the plate use while traditional proteins will be reduced in size and increased in price. Perhaps, in a month or six weeks, the heat will overtake the tender greens and a lot more product is culled, but right now it’s all prime. Time for ads or promos?  Let’s talk.  


If you read these pages regularly you know we are fans of Andy’s Orchards. There simply is no finer stone fruit. That said, we do acknowledge that there is other quality stone fruit and you can’t always have the best. While Andy’s is just kicking off their season and much of his fruit is spoken for, Kingsburg Velvet™ series is a fine fruit and is available through August. Other inter species fruits  with good flavor, and high sugar such as Peacherine, Emerald Queen, and white flesh peaches. We are getting close to the top of the seasonal curve with new varieties arriving every week. Speaking of every week, Andy’s Blenheim’s start next week. Are you drooling yet?  

                                                     NEW PRODUCE QUIZ – WHO AM I ???

I am originally from the Middle East and Central Asia.  I have been cultivated there for thousands of years.  I am a member in good standing of the Umbelliferae family (you may have heard of my cousin hemlock; I know Socrates has).  I am a biennial plant and have hundreds of varieties ranging in height, thickness, and color.  In fact my various colors almost cover the entire rainbow including, white, orange, red, purple, and if left out to long, black.  I am produced globally but my largest crops come from the United States, China, England, France, Japan, and Poland.  My uses are truly universal. Need to soothe a burn?  Use me raw as a compress for immediate relief.  Menstrual cramping got you bloated? Don’t run to the medicine cabinet, head for the refrigerator, and munch out on me.  Wanna make your wine more interesting?  Use me in the fermentation process and cheer the results.  On the culinary side, I have one danger.  Excessive consumption will make your skin color, my primary skin color.  This is a great alternative to the tanning salon.  You will enjoy me in crudités, soups, salads, sandwiches, cookies, cakes, or classically glazed with brown sugar and butter.  I am a dieter’s delight with my way low calories, and don’t even talk to me about fat, I have none! I am 87% water yet rich in vitamin A and Potassium.  My slender shape also contains Vitamin C, Thiamin, Folic Acid, and Magnesium.  My oil is rich in Vitamin E.  These days you could very well find me skinned and topless, but don’t worry, that gets me to the plate more quickly.  Children thrive on my babies; horses love the old folks.  Why, with this many colors shapes and uses, everyone will find a variety that suits them.  

Answer to last quiz….SUNFLOWER…Congrats to all winners!

Call 908-789-4700 –Lisa or Richard– Fax 908-789-4702 Visit us at “like” us @ Culinary Specialty Produce on Facebook© Culinary Specialty Produce, Inc., 2020