Unfortunately for both Fourth of July revelers and avocado farmers, guacamole may need to be taken off the menu this summer, thanks to a scorching heat wave wreaking havoc in Southern California. Apparently, the 117° temperatures coupled with 30-mile-per-hour winds are far too harsh for the temperamental fruit (we can't say we're surprised).
Avocado farmers in both California and Mexico noticed badly burned branches, shriveled leaves, and fallen fruits just two weeks before the Fourth of July holiday, according to Los Angeles Times. While growers hope to persevere this season, some say that the inclement weather conditions could even wipe out some of next year’s crop. "We’ve been here for 25 years, and this has never happened before,” Jeanne Davis of Coyote Growers told LA Times. “There will probably be a minimal amount of avocados for next year because we think that some of the flowers didn’t make it.” The heat wave is just salt in the wound for California-based farmers, who’ve already dealt with water issues, labor shortages, and increased competition from Mexico in the last few years.
Fortunately, there’s more to Fourth of July appetizers than guacamole and chips (your Instagram feed could probably use a break, anyway). Fill your banquet table with grilled, prosciutto-wrapped peaches; strawberry goat cheese bruschetta; or cucumber rounds with herbed cream cheese in lieu of any avocados at the farmers market. For more quick, easy, and creative appetizers, check out our summer entertaining roundup.
Purchase fresh avocados from Amazon Fresh while you still can, and share your favorite summer appetizers below.