Healthy apple crop following favorable growing conditions
The U.S. Apple Association says USDA’s 2020 production estimate would make this year’s harvest the ninth largest on record since the 1940s.
During their recent outlook conference, the association projected the U.S. crop at 253.3 million bushels, down three percent from last year. Crop values in 2019 were down seven percent even with reported increases in exports.
Growers report Honeycrisp production is expected to increase by 12 percent this year, making it the third-largest produced variety behind Galas and Red Delicious. Those three varieties represent nearly half of all apple production in the U.S.
Michigan growers expect to harvest 22.5 million pounds, on par with last year. Michigan Apple Committee executive director Diane Smith says some areas of the state were impacted more significantly than others by early-season frosts, but growers are reporting a quality crop with minimal frost damage. Michigan is the nation’s third-largest producer of apples behind Washington and New York.