Aid for Cherry Producers Pt 2

Aid for Cherry Producers Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today's Fruit Grower Report, I'm Bob Larson. Washington cherry producers, hit by retaliatory Chinese tariffs the past two seasons, can receive up to $250,000 in direct payments, according to the USDA.

U.S. Representative Dan Newhouse says another plum picked by Washington growers recently is aimed at finding export markets for their fruit ...

NEWHOUSE ... "USDA announced the Agricultural Trade Promotion Program which provides much-needed aid to improve the ability of our agricultural groups to market their products, particularly, in this instance, the Apple Commission and the Fruit Commission, have been recipients of this aid and I think that that will also help blunt the impacts of some of our challenges that we face because of the trade wars."

As far as finding a more permanent solution, Newhouse says we haven't lost hope...

NEWHOUSE ... "I think there's still a lot of support for the administration to continue doing everything they can to level the playing field with our international trading partners, but I think there's some increased anxiousness about the length of time that this is taking."

So, are there still concerns? Newhouse says, you bet ...

NEWHOUSE ... "I can't tell you any different. It's tough right now. It really is. We depend, we need these international markets, but we also, you know, we want to have markets that are open, that we can fairly compete in and that's what the administration is trying to do."

Newhouse says this is tough work, but it takes time and we want to get it done right, but we'll keep pushing to get it done as quickly as possible.


BL: Welcome back to another "Fruit Bites" brought to you by Valent U.S.A. With us again is Valent's Allison Walston. And this week Allison, tell me how growers prepare for harvest.

AW: Preparing for harvest starts way before it is time to pick the fruit. Right now, growers are keeping micronutrients at optimum levels in the orchard. Apples can get watercore if the ratio of nitrogen to calcium is too high, leading to water retention in the apples.

BL: apple trees need Calcium too?

AW: Yes, Calcium levels can also play an important role in fruit firmness and help reduce bitter pit.

BL: What other types of conditions occurring now impact harvest?

AW: Fruit can get stressed by heat and the sun. Too much direct sun on a fruit warms up the skin and basically starts to cook it. So growers use shade cloth, overhead evaporative cooling or sunburn protectants to reduce fruit sunburn.

BL: Wow that is a lot to consider

AW: yes and this is all while dealing with insects, mites and disease pests too!

BL: Well, thanks Allison. Join us again next time for Fruit Bites, brought to you by Valent. Until then, I'm Bob Larson.

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