Sept. 17, 2020

  Market Notes Sept. 17, 2020



At this writing, the fires continue up and down the west coast and they are too numerous to mention.  Portland, Oregon has had the most severe damage while the State has had over a million acres burned. Towns have been wiped out and considering the rage of this fire, causalities remain low.  While one is too many, about 36 lives have been lost.  Over forty-three hundred miles of forest have burned in the state of California which is shared between the State and the Feds. While our leaders argue about how, who, and why the agencies are working together to contain the flames.  Cooler nights and low winds have prevailed as of late, making containment easier. Still homes in Bel-Air and numerous structures in southern California’s Ventura County have been destroyed. While, amazingly, few crops have actually been affected, sheds, equipment, and even farmworkers housing have been turned to ash. Central California skies are slowly clearing and we can once again see clouds, no longer blocked by a blanket of smoke. There’s a long way to go but at the moment it seems that the burn is slowing down, slightly.  


It looks like Mother Nature just played a little joke on the growers in the San Luis Valley of Southern Colorado. As we had hoped, the 12-14 inches of snow that accumulated late last week was all but gone by Tuesday. Harvest has resumed but there are a few issues. First is speed. Harvesters are being run in third gear instead of fifth due to the remaining moisture in the ground. Second is time.  Like we mentioned last week there is a race to get all the potatoes out of the ground before the first freeze. The dig, that was supposed to be done by the beginning of October, has now been extended to October tenth. Our early digs are showing beautiful product and we are hoping that the weather allows us to keep it that way.  


     As we move swiftly to retrieve our fingerlings from the cooling grounds of the San Luis Valley in Southern Colorado, we are pleased to announce that we have already dug this seasons Harvest Moon™ potatoes. While the smooth purple skin and brilliant yellow flesh continue to amaze taster’s buds, we still have a large population to introduce there purple/not purple yellow potatoes to. You can help us educate the world.  We will be sending out samples over the next few weeks and we are willing to bet that our purple skin Harvest Moon™ will be the best yellow flesh potatoes you ever tasted. Please contact your Culinary rep for samples and details.  


    Excluding some recent anomalies, I am the number one cash crop in the United States.  Originating in East Asia (Manchuria), I arrived on the U.S. shores with the Mathew Perry expedition.  I have more protein and calories than any other legume.  I grow on a small bush two to six feet high.  I am raised in a velvety pod that can be gray, yellow, black, white or brown.  I have an amazing amount of uses.  In my infant stage I am used in salads as a sprout.  I am fermented, used as coffee substitute, made into cheese, jam, flour, grits, or used for imitation beef, ham, or chicken.  Industrially my oil is used for soap, paint or vanishes.  I am also a very popular cooking oil.  When brewed I make a wonderful sauce, but often my sauce is packaged without any of me in it.  It’s truly a shame that water, salt, vegetable protein, corn syrup, and caramel color, cheaply replace my rich tangy flavor.  I must be cooked to neutralize the anti-nutrients I contain (phytic acid, and trypsin).  If defatted or dried, I will store moderately well.  If fresh, I must be refrigerated or I will turn rancid in short order.  When they dry us we are used in stews and casseroles but our pleasant hazelnut like flavor is best when fresh.


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., 2015

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