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June 25 2018

first_imgJune 25 , 2018 Excitement is building for the U.S. cherry season that is seeing high-quality fruit being harvest in the Northwest, after an underwhelming start to the domestic campaign due to low California supplies. David Nelley, vice president of categories and global exports for North American fruit trader Oppy, also said that U.S. retailers now were “eager” for a summer crop to promote.The domestic season got underway in April with the California crop, which was greatly reduced due to weather-related issues. Nelley said the crop reached only around three to four million cartons compared to around 9 million last year.”It was frustrating for the growers and also for the retailers who couldn’t really hit competitive prices for things like Memorial Day,” he told Fresh Fruit Portal.”So cherries got off to a muted start – compared to the flourish that they did last year out of California – but since then production has moved to Washington and Oregon and things have gone actually really quite well.”The Northwest crop – which is pegged at around 23 million cartons, compared to over 26 million last year – is seeing larger sizing than in previous years, with good pressure and Brix levels, Nelley said.”In a nutshell, we’ve got larger, firmer and sweeter cherries than we’ve had in the past,” he said in a phone call last week, speaking from one of Oppy’s Oregon-based partner farms that grows cherries for the Orchard View label.”I’m looking out the window today and it’s near perfect cherry weather. We’re now starting to see the transition into Bings – with that comes bigger sizing.” U.S.: California cherry season to arrive later tha … NA: Heatwave, thunderstorms to affect grape, berry … You might also be interested incenter_img He added: “We have crop here that’s extremely marketable.”May was a challenging month for retailers as the low California volumes meant growers needed to charge high prices, limiting promotion opportunities. Some retailers skipped Memorial Day cherry promotions entirely, according to Nelley.But he said that there’s “a lot of excitement” now as retailers build toward Canada Day and Fourth of July promotions. He also explained that with the lower California cherry crop and lower Mexican grape deal during May, retailers were now eager for “something exciting and tasty to promote”.”On the flip side of that, the crop’s eating quality is there, so they can put these cherries out and they will fly off the shelf,” he said.Nelley also predicted the domestic season would remain strong throughout July, in contrast to last year when the market became somewhat saturated with supplies.”So far we’re seeing really great weather – we’re not seeing too many hot days over 100 degrees – so the cherries aren’t baking, and we’re not seeing some of the issues with widespread rainstorms,” he said.”There’s been a little bit of rain here and there but nothing serious and nothing that the fruit hasn’t recovered from really well, so right now it’s looking pretty positive toward July.”At the beginning of the year Orchard View created a partnership with its neighbor Omeg Family Orchards, with fruit from both farms now being sold under the Orchard View label. Nelley said that everything has been going great this season.”Mike [Omeg] is on board working at the production end, working with new varieties and new growing techniques. It’s great to have a guy at the cutting edge – I wouldn’t be exaggerating – of new variety development. So it’s going really well and we’re grateful to have them alongside us,” he said, adding the partnership was helping to “fill a great gap with ideal varieties.” Chilean cherry report analyzes 2018/19 campaign, d … Always Fresh Farms, Giddings Fruit to offer 52-wee …last_img

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