Cider - Making Waves
Cider has been around a long time. In the U.S. it dates back to the 17th century and was one of the staple drinks in early America. Prohibition put a major damper on the industry but according to Sherrye Wyatt, Executive Director for the NW Cider Association it is now roaring back.
WYATT: The Northwest Cider Association was developed and created by some cider makers themselves back in 2010 and about 10 of them or a handful got together and decided that working together and marketing themselves collaboratively made a lot of sense, but there really weren’t that many of them. Since then we’ve now grown to nearly 50 cider makers and we also include orchardists and allied suppliers and anyone who is really interested in helping support or participate in the cider industry.
Cider is made from apples and since we grow a few here in the northwest, Wyatt says that is one of the priorities for the industry.
WYATT: One of them of course is making sure we have good cider apples available so we researched and found sound grant funding through the Washington State Department of Agriculture, it’s a specialty crop block grant that we’ve been doing for two years and it’s helping us develop more varietal testing and there’s a research orchard up in Mount Vernon with Washington State University with over 70 varieties.
Why has cider been growing so rapidly?
WYATT: One of the reasons cider is so exciting is that people are really interested in getting back to what’s local and we’ve seen that happen with craft beer and with the wine industry and even distilleries and cider just seems another natural connection people have to the land and they want to taste what is grown locally.
That’s today’s Fruit Grower Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network.