Volatility Returns

Weather disrupts 2019 dry edible bean crop

Unprecedented. Disastrous. Stressful.

These are just some of the words that have been used to describe the 2019-2020 dry edible bean harvest. Just a couple of months ago everything was fine and dry bean prices had been steady although depressed. Then mother nature stepped in and delivered a relentless barrage of snow, continuous rains, warm temperatures, hail, and a deep freeze across the biggest dry edible bean producing states from North Dakota to Minnesota and Nebraska.

For several weeks, between late September thru November many dry bean dealers were “off the board” while the market evaluated the extent of the crop damage from bad weather. As the news began to spread dry bean participants began to realize things had gone from bad to worst to disastrous very quickly. Concerns about supply and demand started weighing on the market as prices reacted with a bump up, then a jump, and finally spiking. Pinto beans were the variety which had the most volatile reaction in terms of pricing. Wet weather has discolored much of the pinto harvest this year. For much of the 2018-2019 crop year, slow dark pintos did not receive a premium in the market versus conventional pinto and for that reason many growers decided not to plant the slow dark variety this year which turned out to be a bad move for those who didn’t.

This year light colored pinto beans will receive a premium in the marketplace. The question is though, how much will end users be willing to pay? It has been a long time since the market has seen pinto bean prices this high and consumers have been used to lower prices for quite sometime now. Will consumption slow? Where’s Mexico? Can we expect prices to go higher from here? The answer is probably, waiting, and they could. This is scary stuff people, if you need a minute to change into a clean set of your Duluth Trading underwear go for it.

Even the USDA is having a hard time finding out where prices stand as many dealers are reluctant to provide firm numbers. Last time I checked, not available (NA) seemed to be the most consistent offer by dealers, and those who are offering beans have adjusted pricing much higher.

What happens from here, no one really knows. The only thing for certain is volatility has returned to the dry edible bean market and participants will need to adjust.


Brazil Buys Pinto Beans

Brazil Buys Pinto Beans

Bom dia! (That means good morning in Portuguese!)

Como você está? (how are you?)

Dry Pinto beans is doing grrrrrreeeeeat!!! Thanks for asking! It’s been quite a season for the pinto bean lovers out there, things started off a bit rocky with prices scrubbing the floor for the first few months…..But now – things are more like:

I got ants in my pants

And I need to dance

Come on

– James Brown

So there you have it in three simple lines. The pinto bean market has had it’s up’s, down’s, and up’s again. Prices are back to higher levels and growers can appreciate that. There’s bean a good steady flow of pinto bean exports into the Caribbean markets and America’s this year. Consumers kept consuming beans in all forms from traditional cooked beans to healthy familiar snacks like “Beanitos”, to tortillas made of beans or pulses. Yup, the International Year of Pulses #IYP2016 has really bean positive from every angle. Gotta love it when things go to plan and the future looks bright.

You want to know what we see when we look out there in this beautiful #beanbig world? We see people everywhere eating the foods they love (like beans) and that are good for their bodies.  We see new USA dry edible bean export markets reaching out as far as the eye can see. From Colombia to Cuba, and now coming to a theater near you in Brazil. Yes sir, things are gonna get popping like Orville Redenbacher on a Saturday night.

Brazil’s national bean is the Carioca bean, and this year bad weather disrupted the Carioca bean supply tremendously. Supply and demand physics shot Carioca prices up with the power of a rocket to the point where the average price in reals (Brazil’s currency) has reached $1.35 per pound. Anyone who knows anything about Brazil knows THIS IS the bean variety the Brazilian people can’t live without! Seriously! No joke! Not kidding! Not even playing! Ever. Got it?

Brazilians have it rough lately with a disastrous bean crop, outbreak of Zika, the Petrobras scandal,  a presidential impeachment, and preparing for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio. To make a long story short, Brazil now has a major shortage of Carioca beans and the Brazilian government has allowed imports from a list of bean growing countries; which includes the United States of America (Gotta love that part).

THIS IS REALLY EXCITING STUFF PEOPLE! The reason this is so exciting is the Carioca bean variety is extremely similar to USA pinto beans. The look, feel, and taste is very recognizable in both types of bean varieties. This has presented an opportunity for the US dry edible bean industry to export beans to Brazil.

If the Brazilian public accepts USA pinto bean values and accepts it’s taste versus their own national Carioca bean variety- then anything is possible. Now here’s the funny bit… The word “pinto” in Portuguese means pecker! Which might be a reason why pinto beans sales haven’t had much success in Brazil previously. Can you imagine the average Brazilian consumer in their local supermarket shopping for beans and glancing over at the newly imported USA package labeled schlong beans? You could see why the name would probably stunt sales growth.

The Brazilian government & food importers have had quite a task coming up with a new name to market pinto beans which would cross over well in Portuguese.  We do think they have managed to figure out a good name for pintos in Brazil. The new name will refer to the  capital city of the State of Sao Paulo Brazil.

Now for the real exciting part! Drum roll please!……… Dry Pinto Beans like to say thank you to Captain Nick and the dedicated pinto bean growers in North Dakota for helping us export the first containers this season of United States pinto beans from North Dakota to Brazil! Way to go everyone!!!

Brazil importers made their purchase of:

2015-2016 US#1 F.Garcia Brand Limited Harvest Slow Dark Pinto Beans 100lbs.IMG_4149F.Garcia Limited Harvest Slow Dark Pinto Beans


and: 2015-2016 US#1 F.Garcia Triple Cleaned Pintos BeansF.Garcia Pinto Beans Original Bag 50 LB (1)

Bottom line: From all of us here in the USA, Obrigado Brazil! (Thank you Brazil)!

Now let’s Samba!

(A Brazilian dance style)

brazil flag


Slow Dark Pinto Beans Arrive

Slow Dark Pinto Beans

For several years, the dry edible bean industry has been trying to develop a pinto seed variety that is resistant to light and slow it’s natural darkening process. When pinto bean buyers choose their products, they typically choose the lightest colored beans. This is the reason why pinto bean dealers (although they might not like to admit it) have been trying to create a new pinto bean seed variety that stays brighter + whiter longer (and would also have good yield in the field).

Mother nature intended for pinto beans to darken over time to a brownish color. However, it’s tougher selling a darker pinto bean than selling a brighter pinto bean when it comes to certain markets. When pintos are first harvested they are typically much lighter in color, but as the days + weeks + months pass pinto beans naturally darken due to exposure to light + heat + the natural elements. Please note: The darkening process does not affect the nutritional properties of the pinto beans, it only changes it’s color to a darker tone.

Dry edible seed companies & the leading agricultural schools in certain state universities have been busy in the lab (and fields) trying to splice and dice the perfect pinto bean so it’s color does not darken as quickly. After several years of hard work it seems the dry edible bean industry has achieved a new pinto bean variety which stays much brighter than other pinto seed varieties. This new pinto variety is called “slow dark” pinto beans. They have been recently tested in Florida and other locations in the United States to see how it performs against other pinto seed varieties such as La Paz & Wind Breaker.

Dry Pinto Beans has been able to attain some photographs from friends of ours who conducted the “slow dark” pinto bean trials and the results were very impressive! 

In the link below there are photos of 3 different pinto bean varieties: La Paz, Wind Breaker, and Vibrant (which is now called “slow dark pintos” or “SD” for short). As you can see, the vibrant variety (slow dark) is much lighter than it’s cousins – Wind Breaker & La Paz. Take a look at the results and click the link below to view for yourself.

2010, 2011, and 2013 Seed Photos of Windbreaker, Vibrant, and La Paz