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Convention Special – The Big Issue

Featured stories about orchard economics, apples, cherries and blueberries appear in this issue.

Click here to view a PDF version of this issue.

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Last Bite: Cox pipped out by Gala

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Cox’s Orange Pippin is a firm, juicy, full-flavored apple with an orange-red skin and cream-colored flesh.
Photo by Jacqueline King, WSU

Cox’s Orange Pippin—Britain’s favorite apple for

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Eradication not likely

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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The light brown apple moth is about a quarter of an inch long.
PHOTO BY R. ANSON EAGLIN, USDA APHIS

State and federal officials, and growers and

Cherry economics

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Several new studies that look at the enterprise budgets of standard and high-density sweet cherry orchards and the economics of establishing a high-density sweet cherry

Good Point

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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As a tree fruit grower in Washington State, you are involved in a risky business. Some years the dice roll your way, some they don’t.

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New research orchard structures

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Cravo roof in a closed position.
PHOTO COURTESY OF CRAVO

New protected orchard structures were installed last spring at Michigan State University’s horticultural research station at Clarksville.

Use AgProfit to customize data

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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The high-density orchard establishment study and the enterprise budgets are designed to work with AgProfit, a computer software program developed by Oregon State University, Washington

Organic trade association seeks input

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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The Organic Trade Association is holding town-hall forums across the country to gather industry thoughts about the association’s proposal to establish a federal organic research

Land is scarce and costly

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Farmland has become scarce and expensive as growers plow their profits back into their operations.

Tree fruit growers who have been making good profits in recent

High-density cherry orchard economics

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Planting a high-density cherry orchard, with its earlier production and potential for higher yields at maturity, is one of the options that growers should consider

Cherry research needed

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Washington cherry and stone fruit growers will have another opportunity in the coming weeks to vote on a special assessment to fund research at Washington

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Yields are critical

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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In economic study of the costs of establishing, producing, and packing Honeycrisp apples in Washington State underlines the importance of high yields.

Dr. Karina Gallardo, agricultural

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Transition brings uncertainty

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Kevin Moore
Courtesy of University of Missouri, Columbia

In a family farm business, there’s often the hope or expectation that the next generation will return to work

Cost of growing Reds

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A new economic study from Washington State University estimates the variable costs  of producing Red Delicious in a mature orchard at $6,436 per acre and

Over-the-row research

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Research evaluating over-the-row tart cherry harvesting was funded in 2008 as a five-year project by USDA’s Research, Education, and Economics Information System.

Headed by Michigan State

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The no-family dilemma

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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You’ve invested your life in building a vineyard, winery, or other agricultural enterprise, producing a high-quality product with a topnotch reputation. For some, the business

Factors affecting profit

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Tree density has a highly significant positive effect on yield.
Tree density has a highly significant effect on trunk diameter.
Profitability increases with increasing tree density up

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Salish launched in B.C.

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Courtesy of Rich MacDonald (AAFC)

A new apple variety from British Columbia, Canada, called Salish was launched in the marketplace this fall under a new brand

Tips for succession planning

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Bob Betz and Steve Griessel offer these suggestions to growers, winemakers, and others involved in agriculture interested in developing a succession plan:
1. Plan ahead.
• Allow

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Prune for size

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Producing fruit today requires higher and higher degrees of innovation. Profit margins are small, and quality demands are high. Exact standards and specifications regarding fruit

Farm labor solution critical

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Just before the November elections, there was a flurry of farm labor-related activity in Washington, D.C.

As it turns out, it had little to do with

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Information is key

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As incoming president of the Washington State Horticultural Association, Jeff Cleveringa hopes to strengthen the association’s role in keeping growers informed.

For over a century, the

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Newest AVA

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Cameron Fries of White Heron Cellars was one of several who worked to create the new Ancient Lakes AVA.
Photo courtesy of White Heron Cellars

When the

GAO report documents, but doesn’t fix, H-2A

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Adding new fuel to the growing fire over farm labor reform, the Government Accountability Office issued a report in September describing the H-2A program as

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The best clone for Washington

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Don’t get too hung up on planting the right clone, say two noted wine industry members from Washington State. Years of collecting wine grape clonal

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The dark side of Honeycrisp

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Honeycrisp apples have outstanding flavor and texture, but the tree has a long list of characteristics that make it challenging, expensive, and frustrating to grow.

Because

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Not your typical nursery

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Markus Freepons of Northwest Vinifera, showed his grape callusing pits during a field day held last August sponsored by the Washington Association of Wine Grape

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Cherries as berries

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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The Korvan 7240 blueberry harvester was first demonstrated at the Clarksville Horticulture Experiment Station by Michigan State University’s team at the start of the research

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High-density economics

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Almost 20 years ago, horticulturists at Cornell University set out to develop a better orchard design and the economic data to show how it performed

The back story

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After the fall of communism in Eastern Europe and the breach of the Berlin Wall in 1989, countries like East Germany and Poland were re-integrated

Blueberry grower tries new methods

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While Michigan is considered a natural for blueberry production because of the acid, sandy soils located in the moderated climate along Lake Michigan, Steve Hunt

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How long can this last?

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Consumer demand for Honeycrisp apples is so intense and the return so high that growers can afford to spend the additional time and money it

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Washington-Chile partnership

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Washington State fruit growers and packers Gebbers Farms of Brewster and Chelan Fruit Cooperative have purchased a 50-percent stake in four fruit-producing companies in Angol,

Good Point: Real estate activity by region

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Beginning in late 2011 and continuing into 2012, there’s been increased real estate activity in the Pacific Northwest, driven by strong fruit prices and expansion

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Red’s not dead

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Photo by Melissa Hansen

For the past 30 years, Red Delicious has been the poor relation of the apple family. Although all varieties of apples have

Nursery trees are selling fast

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Strong prices for apples during the past few seasons have prompted a spurt in orchard renewal and expansion, tree nurseries report. Demand for certain varieties

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Worried about labor

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Steve Hunt, the incoming president of the Michigan State Horticultural Society, grows only one kind of fruit—blueberries—about 110 acres worth.

He’s been doing it for 32

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Cherry enterprise budgets available

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Mike Omeg reminds growers not to get too hung up on the specifics.
Photo by Geraldine Warner

Oregon State University agricultural economists recently updated enterprise budgets for

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Blueberry explosion

December 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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The blueberry industry has had a growth curve that growers would love to see for any fruit.
From a relatively minor industry producing about 100 million

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Borton Fruit turns 100

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Members of the Borton family currently involved in the business are (left to right): Andy Birley (fourth generation), Katie (Borton) Birley (fourth), John Borton (third),