KBTX | Bryan & College Station, TX | News, Weather, Sports

Tomato Shortage Makes Prices Rise

By: Carly Kennelly
By: Carly Kennelly

First it was gas, then it was milk, and now tomato prices are growing higher.

Hurricanes in Florida, rain in California, and insects in Mexico have left tomato crops short.

"When there's too much water the tomatoes get soft, they soak up too much water and get soft. They start to get blossom rot, all kinds of problems," said Patrick Gendron with Brazos Valley Farmer's Market Association.

"This is the shortest tomatoes have been in my memory, the price will probably go a little higher in November," said a farmer.

But locally, prices are rising even before the change of the month.

A produce expert at the Farm Patch said tomato prices in our area have nearly doubled.

Gendron said while it's bad news for consumers, it's not necessarily for Texas farmers who plant in the spring. They won't be affected.

"I wish this was a problem in the spring then we'll be able to reap the benefits of that," said Gendron.

The largest shortage is in commercial-grade tomatoes.

Restaurants like Burger King, Wendy's, and Chipotle will let their customers know if they run short of the red fruit.

But the shortage is only expected to last until December.


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