Apple A Day Gets Producers Paid: Washington state is looking at a quality apple crop this year

Apple producers in the Evergreen State are looking forward to a quality crop this year. It comes after several less-than-stellar harvests in Washington State.

According to Jon Devaney, President of the Washington State Tree Fruit Association, “After the last two years, which were exceptionally difficult, I think growers are really looking forward to a year that’s more normal in size and weather conditions. And, what they’re seeing for size development, color development, and other fruit quality factors, it’s looking really encouraging towards having a great quality crop this year.”

Devaney says that this year’s fresh apple crop is estimated at just over 134 million boxes at 40 pounds each. That is an uptick of nearly 29 percent from last year.
However, he says that the numbers can be deceiving because last year’s crop was so small. He notes the bottom line is the crop is back to normal and harvest has begun.

“Some people were picking around the first of August, so some of the harvest has already begun for some growers. Individual locations might be a little earlier or later depending on their micro-climates, but the start was at the usual time, you know, right around the beginning of August and we’re looking at a pretty normal range of harvest dates,” he explains. “We always remind everyone that there’s still a couple of months of harvest ahead of us. So, bad things can still happen and this is a forecast. It’s not in the books yet, but it’s looking really good.”

Washington apples accounted for 21 percent of the state’s total ag value in 2021 and are exported out to 60 countries worldwide.

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