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Cold Winter Raises Produce Prices in the Valley - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Produce Prices Peak

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As tough as our winter has been, we're not the only ones suffering.  Weird winter weather has hit parts of the Americas pretty hard.  And now the Red River Valley is feeling it from the grocery store to the drive-thru lane.  

Produce specialists say it's the perfect storm.  Freezes in Florida, Arizona, even Mexico, and heavy rains in California have killed off huge amounts of crops. And the price of some veggies and fruits is skyrocketing. The hardest hit are bananas, tomatoes, green peppers, and cucumbers.  Growers have reported a 50 to 80 percent crop loss, doubling prices at the checkout.  Distributors would normally search for vegetables in other markets, but those places have been hit, too.

Fast-food restaurants are running short on supply.  Subway stores in Fargo have now posted signs on their drive-thru menus warning customers they may not get that tomato slice on their cold-cut combos. Shelves are still stocked at Hornbachers, but Hornbachers produce specialist, Dan Yamane, says that could change if this weather keeps up.  He says, "We have seen a lot of shortage or out-of-stocks, but they're rumored to be on the way. We'll see as it progresses. Our corporation has done a great job buying these products, and them in for us, but you never know."

Despite it being one of the worst produce seasons in decades, Yamane says your veggies will still be up to standards.  However, some may not have as long a shelf life and they may not be as pleasing to the eye.

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