Cherries and Inflation Pt 2

Cherries and Inflation Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
From the Ag Information Network, I’m Bob Larson with today’s Fruit Grower Report. Weather, rising input costs, inflation, it’s all coming at us over the past couple of years.

BJ Thurlby, president at Northwest Cherry Growers, says transportation costs are higher too and that will likely hit foreign markets a bit harder …

THURLBY … “With the U.S. dollar being so strong right now, it’s got a few different importers that we work with around the world a little nervous because they’re thinking, wow, by the time we get them here, we’re going to have to be selling these cherries for $12.99-$13.99 U.S. per pound.”

And the higher prices, Thurlby says, means we’d better deliver …

THURLBY … “On a year like this where we have these higher costs, you’ve really got to deliver a great product. And so, we’ve been kind of bouncing that back against our growers, just kind of reminding them to go all-in on this because if we’re going to be able to harvest this crop, we’re going to need to have great fruit.”

The Southeast Asian markets, Thurlby says have been a challenge …

THURLBY … “You know, a lot of those countries are quite a ways behind the United States in terms of vaccination rates. So, they all had these COVID breakouts finally and it was just bad timing for, you know, the Northwest cherry growers.”

But, Thurlby says, that was last year …

THURLBY … “We’re expecting to have Southeast Asia back because right now, you know, knock on wood, these markets appear to be reasonably clear of COVID and back to normal operations. So, that’s a positive for us.”

Northwest cherries should begin coming off the trees within a few weeks, a bit later than normal, but delicious nonetheless.

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