As of mid-January, California’s tomato processors indicated they intend to contract 11.8 million tons, 2 percent less processing tomatoes than the 2007 contracted production reported in August 2007.

Processors estimate the contracted production for 2008 will come from 288,000 acres producing an average of 40.97 tons per acre. The contracted acreage forecast is 10,000 acres less than was reported to be planted under contract in the August 2007 report.

This early processing tomato contract intentions estimate was funded by the California League of Food Processors in cooperation with the California Department of Food and Agriculture. The USDA processing intentions estimate for all states will be issued on April 3.