Cherry Glut Pt 1

Cherry Glut Pt 1

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
From the Ag Information Network, I’m Bob Larson with today’s Fruit Grower Report. Thanks to a longer than normal cherry season in California and a flash bloom in NW cherries, the market couldn’t handle the high volume of cherries available this year.

NW Cherry Growers President, BJ Thurlby says this was the most unusual season he’s ever seen …

THURLBY … “We pushed our promotions back to start the last week of June and, you know, there’s a part of me that was wondering would it have made more sense to maybe go a little bit earlier, but if we did, we’d be promoting California cherries. So, it’s really a tough question and kind of a Catch-22.”

The overlap, Thurlby says was a retail killer …

THURLBY … “We never did gain that momentum and by the time our program started and by the time our growers got to the market, there just was no space. There was nothing there but a bunch of high-priced California cherries.”

The window, Thurlby says has been a short one …

THURLBY … “You know, normally on a normal year, we get 90-days of market out of our crop and we’re not going to be close to that this year. And realistically, we’re going to look back and we’re going to say 80% of the crop shipped in a 30-day window.”

And, Thurlby says it will be over very soon …

THURLBY … “We’re going to be done in August and this thing just, boom. It started late and then compressed down and it’s done fast. So, that just tells you the story of fewer days and too many cherries in those windows to try to move or get packed or get picked.”

Tune in tomorrow for more … on this most unusual cherry season.

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