Northwest Cherry Challenges Pt 2

Northwest Cherry Challenges Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. Northwest cherries are in full bloom right now and are looking pretty good at this point, but recent winds and unseasonably cold nights have undoubtedly cut the crop outlook from what it had been.

Northwest Cherry Growers president BJ Thurlby says the weather has been a challenge, but they’ve got another ongoing threat …

THURLBY … “We think this crop, off of the top, is going to be down two to two-and-a-half million boxes from what is our number one issue in our industry right now which is called Little Cherry Disease. And, that’s kind of been going on the last four or five years, we’ve seen it grow and grow and grow. And, now we’re at the point where we’ve got all hands-on deck trying to figure out how we’re going to stop this.”

Thurlby says they’ve got to stay on top of this and that it won’t be easy …

THURLBY … “It’s a shame, you know, it’s more expense and it’s one that we’re seeing a lot of trees lose the battle with. And, the only way to stay on top of this is just to be vigilant and continue to spray.”

Thurlby says Little Cherry Disease is showing no signs of letting up …

THURLBY … “Like I said, two or three years ago I think some of us were looking at this thing going, oh it’s just another virus and we’ll deal with it, but as it kills the trees and the fruit becomes un-harvestable on trees that are infected, we’ve taken a new look at this over the last two years and we’ve said, ok this is an all-hands-on deck issue that we have to deal with as a group.”

Tune in tomorrow for more on this year’s Northwest cherry crop and what it will take to take down Little Cherry Disease.

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