The week leading up to the Fourth of July holiday is the peak time for watermelon ads, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Retail Report. More than 3,800 stores per week promoted seedless watermelon in 2016, but that number jumped to more than 22,000 the week of July 4.
The only other two weeks that even come close are Memorial Day, with 17,700 stores on ad, and Labor Day, with 15,000 stores on ad.
How is this year's watermelon supply outlook?
Watermelon crop shapes up
Quality and quantity won’t be a problem in the watermelon market for the Fourth of July, said Mark Arney, executive director of the Winter Springs, Fla.-based National Watermelon Promotion Board.
“I’d say if you called me a month ago, I’d be a little more concerned because there had been some cold weather in central Florida to further north and colder into Georgia, and some guys there had to replant,” he said. “But it doesn’t appear now that it’s as bad as people thought. I was in a field last Friday in Lakeland, Fla., and things were looking really good. We tested some, and the brix was great.”
Volume should be adequate as the holiday approaches, Arney said.
“Of course, we just don’t know; weather is always a wild card,” he said.