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The latest updates, exclusively from goodfruit.com.

Fruit businesses assess damage after Wenatchee fire

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A wildfire that started as a brush fire near Wenatchee over the weekend affected several tree fruit businesses and destroyed 28 homes.

Embers from the burning

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2015 Fruit Crop Guesstimate is in

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Fruit growers and processors met in Grand Rapids, Michigan, June 24 to take an early shot at guessing the size of the some of the

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Growers wait for guest workers

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The Washington Farm Labor Association (WAFLA) is drawing attention to the plight of Mexican guest workers, who have been stranded at the U.S. border, and

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McGrath to lead Washington Agriculture and Forestry Education Foundation

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Sheryl McGrath has been appointed to succeed Dave Roseleip as president of the Washington Agriculture and Forestry Education Foundation.

Roseleip retired at the end of June

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Washington Apple Commission hires export coordinator

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Lindsey Huber has joined the Washington Apple Commission staff in Wenatchee as export marketing coordinator.

Huber earned a degree in agribusiness with a minor in international

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Holtzinger Fruit Company hires Dave Henze as president

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Dave Henze has been appointed president of Holtzinger Fruit Company in Yakima, Washington, to succeed David Lawrence.

Henze has more than 18 years’ experience in the

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WSU appoints Penn State’s DuPont to succeed Smith

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Tianna DuPont, extension educator with Pennsylvania State University, has been appointed by Washington State University to succeed Tim Smith as tree fruit extension specialist based

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Many WAFLA workers cleared to cross border

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(Updated June 18)
Nearly 200 workers who were designated for cherry harvest in Washington have been granted visa wavers by the U.S. State Department, Washington Farm

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Organic exemption expected soon

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture will soon introduce a rule exempting organic growers from paying mandatory promotion assessments to federal marketing orders.

This will mean, for

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Broetje Orchards to pay $2.25 million fine for hiring illegal immigrants

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Broetje Orchards of Washington State, one of the country’s largest apple growers, has agreed to pay a $2.25 million fine for hiring illegal immigrants. The

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Optimize water use with Irrigation Scheduler

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Irrigation management is especially critical during drought years, when reduced mountain snowpack results in less irrigation water to orchards and vineyards in some areas

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New guide focuses on non-crop host plants used by spotted wing drosophila

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Spotted wing drosophila do not depend on fruit and berry growers’ crops for their food, shelter, and reproduction. They can live in non-crop host plants

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Cornell publishes series on apple IPM for beginners

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Cornell University has published a new integrated pest management series of 15 fact sheets under the title “Apple IPM for Beginners.”

The series was edited by

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Northwest pear production remains stable

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Orchardists in Washington and Oregon expect to harvest 20.5 million boxes of fresh pears this fall. That’s just 2 percent below last season’s crop and

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Drought relief funding available for Oregon farmers

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Farmers in nearly half of Oregon’s counties can apply for $2.5 million in USDA drought relief funding through June 26. The money is available to

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China’s ag agency says yes to all varieties of U.S. apples

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that China’s agriculture regulatory agency has allowed access for all U.S. apple varieties, according to a news release today from

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Fruit Crop Guesstimate June 24 in Michigan

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The 60th annual Fruit Crop Guesstimate will be held June 24 at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The annual early look at

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Water relief workshops, tips, and USDA aid available for growers

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With temperatures rising and water restrictions starting in Washington and other western states, several announcements to help growers through the coming season are cropping up.

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New Washington ag director appointed

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Next month Washington State will have a new director of agriculture. Derek Sandison was appointed on May 21 by Governor Jay Inslee to take over

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NW Cherry Growers expect crop to drop 15 percent from last year to 19.7 m boxes

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Northwest cherry growers expected to harvest just under 20 million boxes of fresh cherries this season, down from 23 million in 2014.

During Northwest Cherry Growers’

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Lewis-Clark Valley appellation proposed

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The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau published a notice of proposed rulemaking on April 14 to establish the more than 300,000-acre Lewis-Clark Valley

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New requirement for growers to receive crop insurance

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There’s a new requirement for growers who receive federal crop insurance premium support.

The 2014 Farm Bill tied federal crop insurance subsidies to conservation compliance, so

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California Fresh Fruit Association elects officers

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David Jackson of Family Tree Farms in Reedley, California, was re-elected chair of the board of the California Fresh Fruit Association for the 2015-2016 fiscal

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Mathison joins 40 under 40

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West Mathison, president of Stemilt Growers, Wenatchee, Washington, has been named as one of Vance Publishing’s 2014 class of “40 Under 40” young leaders.

Experts predict

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Alegria chairs apple board

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Jon Alegria, president of CPC International Apple Company in Tieton, Washington, has succeeded Barbara Walkenauer of Selah as chair of the Washington Apple Commission’s board

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Apple imports from China allowed

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture has published a final rule that will allow Chinese apples to be imported into the United States, effective May 29.

The

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Growers League opens farmworker housing

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U.S. Congressman Dan Newhouse took the opportunity to visit the new Brender Creek seasonal farmworker housing complex in Cashmere while in Washington State this week.

The

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Videos teach precision crop load management

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Cornell University has posted three new videos on YouTube that explain how to do—and the benefits of—precision crop load management.
The video titled “Precision Crop Load

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Michigan Association of Pomesters honor Klein

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Joe Klein Sr., owner of Royal J. Klein and Son Orchard of Sparta, Michigan, has been named Fruit Person of the Year by the Michigan

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Brunner named Apple Citizen

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Dr. Jay Brunner, who has played a key role in the transition to softer pest management programs in tree fruits over the past three decades,

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USDA Approves Record-Breaking Purchase of Apples

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US Apple Association today issued the following news release:
 Vienna, Va. – April 29, 2015 – The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service

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McFerson applies for WSU director job

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Dr. Jim McFerson, manager of the Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission for the past 14 years, has applied for the position of director of Washington

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SWD and BMSB pest workshop this month

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A spotted wing drosophila and brown marmorated stinkbug focused seminar will be held in Hood River, Oregon, on April 30, for small, diversified farmers in

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Don Mercer to be inducted into Wine Hall of Fame

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Horse Heaven Hills pioneer Don Mercer will be inducted in the Legend of Washington Hall of Fame in August by the Walter Clore Wine and

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Another record harvest for wine grapes

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Washington State’s 2014 wine grape harvest was the largest on record and posted the third consecutive year of growth, reports the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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Washington fruit commission representatives reappointed

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Mike Wade of Wenatchee has been reappointed as a representative of the Washington State Fruit Commission on the board of the Northwest Horticultural Council for

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Apple specialist retires

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Leslie Huffman, apple specialist with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, retired March 1.

She joined OMAFRA in 1981 and worked in fruit

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Cold Train officers file $41 million lawsuit against BNSF railway

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Two former officers of Cold Train Express Intermodal Service have filed a $41 million lawsuit against Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway, alleging they suffered

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Kennewick packer earns certification

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Columbia Fresh Packing, an apple and cherry packer in Kennewick, Washington, has received U.S. Department of Agriculture certification for Good Agricultural Practices and Good Handling

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New Zealand wind machine is now available in U.S.

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A portable wind machine developed and manufactured in New Zealand is now being distributed in the United States by Chamberlin Agriculture. The machines can be used

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Growers get tree audits

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Fruit Rights Australia Inc., a company set up a year ago to deter illegal propagation of stone fruit varieties, announced recently that growers Steve and

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B.C. growers elect board

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Members of the B.C. Fruit Growers’ Association in British Columbia, Canada, reelected Fred Steele as president for 2015, with Bhupinder Dhaliwal as vice president. Also

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Washington Wine Commission releases marketing videos

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The Washington Wine Commission has released a new educational marketing video called “Our Story” to visually tell about the state’s wine industry, its history, people,

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Ballard retires from clean plant program

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After helping to expand Washington State’s grape industry through public and private entities for more than 35 years, Gary Ballard, operations manager of the Clean

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Growers partner to buy orchard

Fourteen families joined the venture with their cooperative Scotian Gold.

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Big hopes for small apple

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The Italian company Kiku Variety Management has big hopes for its small apple called Isaaq, which is being promoted as a snack apple.

Isaaq is being

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Health Canada approves Arctic apples for growth and sale

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Health Canada has approved two varieties of Arctic apples, Arctic Granny Smith and Arctic Golden Delicious, for growth and sale in Canada.
The announcement was made

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Judge blisters EEOC for "frivolous" case against growers

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A federal judge has issued a blistering critique of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, saying the agency had brought a lawsuit against growers that was

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Washington governor declares drought in three regions

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Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has declared a drought emergency for three areas of the state, setting in motion money, temporary permitting and other relief for

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Antibiotic registered for fire blight control

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The bactericide Kasumin (kasugamycin) has been registered in the apple growing states of Washington, Michigan, New York, and Oregon for control of fire blight in

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