State's processed tomato production climbs

Harvesting processed tomatoesHarvesting processed tomatoes
As of May 24, California’s tomato processors reported they have or will have contracts for 13.1 million tons of processing tomatoes for 2013.

This production is a 4.5 percent increase from the final contracted production total from last year.

The May contracted acreage of 259,000 is 2,000 below the January intentions forecast and 1,000 above last year’s final contracted acreage.

Fresno County remains the top California County in contracted planted acreage for 2013 with 99,000 acres. Yolo, Kings, San Joaquin, Merced and Stanislaus County make up the remaining top five counties for contracted planted acreage, respectively.

Madera County, which had 3,000 contracted acres the past two years, jumped to 5,000 acres this year.

These counties make up 80 percent of the 2013 total contracted planted acreage for California.

Tomato beds were formed and received pre-plant herbicides in February. Processing tomato transplants were planted in early spring as allowed by weather and soil conditions.

Curly top virus is an issue this year. Significant damage has been reported throughout the State causing growers to replant some fields.

California League of Food Processors in cooperation with the California Department of Food and Agriculture funds the early processing tomato estimate.