Fruit Suffering

Fruit Suffering

Fruit Suffering. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Fruit Grower Report.

We all know the story by now. The fruit season in the northwest came on really early this year due to an extremely mild winter and it’s now suffering due to recent hot weather and a lack of snowmelt water to feed irrigators. The only thing that will change this picture is a fall and winter full of rain and snow. On Friday, state officials met to update the public on the drought conditions. Washington Dept. of Agriculture’s, hydro geologist, Jaclyn Hancock discussed how fruit was being affected.

HANCOCK: Extreme heat, dry soils and precipitation deficits have put stress on growers throughout the entire state. Some highlights from reports regarding the impacts of the drought on agriculture include - heat has damaged a portion of the cranberry crop, raspberry yields are lower, some crop damage in blueberries and raspberries due to heat and smaller berries are being reported.

Seven state and federal agencies took part in the conference call to the media. Of course cherries and apricots are almost done but other tree fruit and grapes are suffering.

HANCOCK: Orchards and vineyards are reporting crops being sunburned and there’s a reduced size in tree fruit in some areas.

She reports that emergency funds are available to some growers.

HANCOCK: There’s currently 26 counties in Washington that are eligible for federal relief programs of some kind and these growers can apply for emergency loans. We’re urging growers to keep detailed records of crop loss for federal assistance applications

That’s today’s Fruit Grower Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network of the West.

Previous ReportBeekeeper Tax Change
Next ReportPiece-Rate Ruling