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Reds still dominate apple exports

June 18th, 2015|0 Comments

Club varieties are too expensive when freight and duties are added.

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Apple varieties from A to Z

June 8th, 2015|0 Comments

Sink your teeth into this alphabet of apples

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Who’s going to sell all these apples?

June 1st, 2015|0 Comments

And who's going to buy them?

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Exports benefit B.C. cherry growers

May 27th, 2015|0 Comments

Growers are feeling positive as export opportunities ease margin woes.

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

May 26th, 2015|1 Comment

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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 Northwest Fruit Exporters.

Phytosanitary certificates for export will be available after USDA has updated their phytosanitary export database (PExD).  This is expected to occur within the

Apple imports from China allowed

May 15th, 2015|0 Comments

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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 USDA’s Animal Plant Health Inspection Service completed a risk analysis two years ago to determine that apples could be safely imported into the United States

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Nova Scotia revisited

April 2nd, 2015|0 Comments

Nova Scotia has earned a reputation for producing the best Honeycrisp apples.

Health Canada approves Arctic apples for growth and sale

March 20th, 2015|0 Comments

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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 on the Health Canada website five weeks after deregulation was granted in the United States by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The apples contain a gene

Biennial pear congress to begin this year in Italy

March 18th, 2015|0 Comments

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Beginning this year, Italy’s Interpoma congress and trade show, which focuses on apples, will be alternated with Futurpera, an exhibition devoted to pears.

Interpoma, which is held every other year, was last held in November 2014 in Bolzano in the South Tyrol area. The first biennial Futurpera exhibition will be held

Crab apple pruning demos

March 2nd, 2015|0 Comments

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Two pruning demonstrations have been scheduled this month to help orchardists understand how to prune Manchurian crab apple trees in order to be eligible to export apples to China.

The Chinese apple market, closed between 2012 and 2014 due to fruit infection caused by two postharvest rots, recently reopened. The two

Trade agreement is unifying: Good Point

February 27th, 2015|0 Comments

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A few years ago, Todd Fryhover of the Washington State Apple Commission was invited to speak at the Premier Apple Co-Op meeting in New York to talk about “China.”

As I introduced him to the group of apple growers and marketers from basically the entire eastern apple growing states including Michigan,

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Schlect: A cold Arctic blast

February 17th, 2015|0 Comments

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● USDA announced last Friday its deregulation of a Canadian firm’s–Okanagan Specialty Fruits, Inc.–two varieties (Granny Smith and Golden) of GMO apples, one day in advance of a three-day weekend. This is not unusual timing for controversial announcements by federal agencies. It almost guarantees a muted response in the media.

Having

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Interpoma impressions: Photo gallery from 2014 IFTA Italy

February 5th, 2015|0 Comments

Pictures from the international apple machinery show in Italy.

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Big export year for Northwest cherries

January 27th, 2015|0 Comments

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The 2014 season was not only a record year for Northwest cherries, it was one of the best years for Northwest cherry exports, especially to South Korea, which almost doubled imports from 2012.

“Last year was one of our biggest export years ever,” said Keith Hu, foreign marketing director for Northwest

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China’s cold chain is improving

January 27th, 2015|0 Comments

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Though China’s lack of cold-chain facilities and logistics for perishable products has been its Achilles heel, improvements are expected within the next five years, says Keith Hu, Northwest Cherry Growers representative.

China is recognized as one of the hottest markets in the world due to its large population and potential for

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China agrees to accept all varieties of U.S. apples

January 26th, 2015|0 Comments

The reciprocal agreement will allow China to ship apples into the United States.

Bigger crops ahead

January 21st, 2015|0 Comments

Growers will need to produce niche varieties and maximize production efficiency, marketers say.

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Schlect: On the docks

December 12th, 2014|0 Comments

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● This fall’s disruptions of ocean shipping–that have lacerated our tree fruit exports–beg for some type of long-term remedy. Unionized longshoremen should not have the kind of economic clout that can be misused to so deeply harm our growers, other innocents, and, in general, the entire U.S. economy.

One idea,

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Reopening of Chinese apple market is welcome news for growers

November 25th, 2014|0 Comments

Industry grateful as biggest apple crop ever prepares to ship.

Hort Council appoints information specialist

November 21st, 2014|0 Comments

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Drew Toop will join the staff of the Northwest Horticultural Council as regulatory information specialist on December 8. Toop, who grew up in the Yakima, Washington, earned a bachelor’s degree in English and Chinese Language and Culture from Washington State University in 2012. He has spent time in Taiwan and

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Growers sought for Piqa pears

November 16th, 2014|0 Comments

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The New Zealand company Prevar is looking for orchardists in North America who would like to grow new Piqa brand pear varieties developed in New Zealand. Prevar commercializes fruit varieties bred by Plant and Food Research.

Piqa Boo (PremP009 cultivar) is a red pear that combines characteristics of European, Japanese, and

New organization to promote Australia’s horticulture industry

November 16th, 2014|0 Comments

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A new organization called Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited has been formed to replace Horticulture Australia Limited (HAL) and undertake research and development and marketing efforts to support Australia’s $9.5 billion horticulture industry.

The move follows a recent independent report into the performance of HAL that recommended a change to a new

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China opens to Washington State apples

October 29th, 2014|2 Comments

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Good news came to Washington’s apple industry today when U.S. Department of Agriculture officials announced the immediate reopening of China’s market to Washington Red and Golden Delicious apples. It’s good timing as growers are wrapping up harvest of the largest crop on record, which some believe will be around 150

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Mission to Kazakhstan

October 16th, 2014|1 Comment

Young Kazakhs are being trained in horticulture to help them improve orchard production.

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Prune out dead crab apple tissue

October 15th, 2014|0 Comments

Reduce disease risk by pruning crab apple trees.

  • Dr. Richard Kim, manchurian crab apples,

Research tackles decay issue

October 15th, 2014|0 Comments

A new project will focus on controlling decay and finding pollinizers that are not disease hosts.

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European consumers like bicolored apples

October 15th, 2014|0 Comments

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European consumers prefer bicolored apples and in some countries, including Germany, they associate dark red apples with mealiness.

European Fruit Magazine reported recently on research by Katrin Korsten from the Niederrhein University of Applied Sciences in Germany, who investigated whether consumers prefer a particular color of apple.

Consumers said they preferred bicolored

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Apple Commission reps are ready to promote large crop

October 14th, 2014|0 Comments

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With a record crop of Washington apples, estimated at 140 million boxes or more, Todd Fryhover is hoping to see a significant boost in exports this season.

Last year, when the industry produced 118 million boxes, 37 million went to export markets.

Fryhover, who is president of the Washington Apple Commission, says

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Large crop on Interpoma agenda

October 1st, 2014|0 Comments

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Europe’s record apple crop and Russia’s ban on European imports will be on the agenda at Interpoma, a biennial congress and trade fair scheduled for November 20 to 22 in Bolzano, Italy.

Europe’s 2014 apple crop was estimated at 12 million tons, a 9 percent increase over the previous year and

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Online cherry promotion earns campaign of the year honor

October 1st, 2014|0 Comments

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Northwest Cherry Growers and two Chinese online retailers, Fruitday and Tmall, have received Asia Fruit Logistica’s Marketing Campaign of the Year Award for their joint promotion of Northwest cherries last season.

Consumers ordered cherries via Tmall’s online platform and received them within 48 to 72 hours. Around 200 tons of cherries

Tree fruit associations close down

August 29th, 2014|0 Comments

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Two long-established tree fruit organizations closed their doors on August 29 as they merged into the new Washington State Tree Fruit Association.

Neither the Washington Growers Clearing House Association nor the Wenatchee Valley Traffic Association will have staff working with the new association.

The staff at the other two organizations, Yakima Valley

Apple crop is big worldwide

August 28th, 2014|0 Comments

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United States apple growers are harvesting a big crop—the third largest ever—but that’s a small part of the big picture. The U.S. crop is only about 6 percent of world production, and there are lots of apples elsewhere, especially in China.

And, more than usual this year, political events are affecting

Washington apple producers hope to resume exports to China

August 15th, 2014|0 Comments

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After being shut out of China for two seasons, some Washington apple producers will likely try to comply with a new, more onerous export protocol in an attempt to ship some Red and Golden Delicious apples there this year, says Mike Willett, vice president for scientific affairs at the Northwest Horticultural

USDA publishes proposed rule to allow imports of apples from China

August 15th, 2014|1 Comment

The public has until September 16 to comment on the proposed rule.

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Schlect: From Russia without love

August 12th, 2014|0 Comments

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● Russia’s economic ban on U.S. agricultural goods will affect the Pacific Northwest’s apple and pear export programs this coming crop year. While the loss of direct sales is a concern, there are also the indirect impacts. For example, where will all the European apples that ordinarily were exported

Herald visits Sea-Tac to watch cherries fly to China

July 23rd, 2014|0 Comments

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The Yakima Herald-Republic’s Ross Courtney visited Sea-Tac airport to watch cherries from the Yakima and Wenatchee areas get loaded for fast delivery aboard a China Eastern Airlines 777 cargo plane.

Courtney wrote:
Cherries sure mean a lot of work at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, just like they do in the Yakima Valley.

The

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Northwest cherries moving in huge volumes

July 2nd, 2014|0 Comments

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June saw some huge shipments of cherries, averaging 332,000 boxes per day, according to the Northwest Cherry Growers.

What was expected to be the second biggest cherry crop ever has triggered enormous movement to the marketplace. June’s total came in at 10.3 million boxes.

Domestic retailers have stepped up promotions through in-store

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Strong cherry crop possible

April 15th, 2014|0 Comments

Fruit Commission expands export efforts

Washington Apple Commission revises roles in handling market access issues

March 14th, 2014|0 Comments

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The Washington Apple Commission gave a nod of approval during its annual meeting in March to changes in how responsibilities for international market access issues are divided between the Northwest Horticultural Association and Northwest Fruit Exporters.

The original memorandum of understanding between the organizations, adopted in 1998, gave NFE responsibility for

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Commission: More MAP dollars mean cherries go farther

March 13th, 2014|0 Comments

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The Washington State Fruit Commission is gearing up for a strong cherry crop in 2014. Though it’s too soon to estimate crop numbers, trees overwintered well and early indications point to a robust crop, which could be anywhere between 20 to 25 million boxes—if Mother Nature cooperates.

Last year’s crop was

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Managing crab apple diseases

February 18th, 2014|2 Comments

Crab apple disease management starts in the orchard with pruning.

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NFE’s Archer retires

January 13th, 2014|0 Comments

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After leading the Northwest Fruit Exporters for 20 years, Jim Archer retired at the end of 2013. Fred Scarlett replaced Archer in early January.

Today, NFE is responsible for managing cherry and apple export programs required by the foreign countries of Japan, Mexico, India, Vietnam, Egypt, Israel, South Africa, and Australia.

The

Crossing the border

January 6th, 2014|0 Comments

Some B.C. apples moved south last fall, into Washington packing houses.

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New Zealand’s ­audacious plan

November 22nd, 2013|0 Comments

The New Zealand pipfruit industry hopes to double its worth in the coming decade.

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Russian retailers see Washington harvest

October 25th, 2013|0 Comments

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Produce buyers from five Russian retail chains, who came to Washington State this week to learn about the tree fruit industry, said they were impressed by the technology in orchards and packing houses, as well as by the openness of the people.

This was the first trip to the United States

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Cherry sales sizzle in China

October 18th, 2013|0 Comments

Online cherry sales in China were the highlight of a season that growers, marketers, and retailers would rather forget.

Learning from last season

October 17th, 2013|0 Comments

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The 2012 U.S. apple crop holds some lessons for apple marketers, lessons that are not “intuitive.” For example, consumers will buy apples even at high prices.

Steve Lutz, executive vice president of the Nielsen Perishables Group, is an analyst who tries to understand people from what they do while shopping in

Good Stuff

August 1st, 2013|0 Comments

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Closer receives registration
Dow AgroSciences has received federal registration of its sulfoxaflor insecticide, sold under the brand name Closer, which is designed to control sap-feeding insects, such as aphids, in tree fruits and other crops. It is the only insecticide available for specialty crops that is classified in Group 4C, making

Cider history repeated?

August 1st, 2013|0 Comments

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Reputedly, hard cider is America’s historic beverage, once considered safer to drink than water and easy to produce since apples grow readily. In 1726, according to one source, average per-capita consumption of hard cider was 35 gallons per year, and it was considered mild enough for children to drink.

But the

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How many apples?

August 1st, 2013|0 Comments

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When the U.S. Apple Association convenes in Chicago later this month for the Apple Crop Outlook and Marketing Conference, three things will be on the minds of the more than 300 growers, packers, and shippers who come from all over the world to meet there every year.

1) What is the size

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The French connection

August 1st, 2013|0 Comments

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At least a dozen orchardists along the Hudson River from New York City north to Albany are developing cideries—the apple cider equivalent of grape wineries.

They’ve developed the Hudson Valley Cider Alliance, are putting together a hard cider trail, and in the fall they celebrate Cider Week. It’s October 18-27 this

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Export promotions need shipper support

August 1st, 2013|0 Comments

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Todd Fryhover, president of the Washington Apple Commission, says the industry needs to increase demand.
Geraldine Warner

The Washington Apple Commission is strengthening its export program in anticipation of larger volumes of apples coming onto the U.S. market in the next few years and wants shippers to support its efforts by using

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China could become big pear market

July 1st, 2013|0 Comments

China could become a significant market for U.S. pears. Louis Ng, who represents the Pear Bureau Northwest in China, believes China could be importing 500,000 to 600,000 boxes of pears annually within the next five to ten years. That would make China the second-largest pear export market after Mexico.

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Undercover production in China

July 1st, 2013|0 Comments

Greenhouses or high tunnels can advance the ripening of peaches and nectarines. (Video and Photo Gallery at bottom of story)

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Good Point: China

May 15th, 2013|0 Comments

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I have talked about the immediate threat of the excessive increases in apple production from Washington State and went so far as to say that while we worry about foreign imports, we need to be acutely aware of our own domestic production numbers. While many may shudder to see Washington

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First Bite

May 15th, 2013|0 Comments

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As the Northwest cherry season draws closer, for the first time in six or seven years I am thinking that the 2013 harvest has the potential to begin during the first days of June. If you’ve ever seen the movie Money Ball, you know the premise of determining a “winning”

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Meet Washington State’s new agriculture director

April 15th, 2013|0 Comments

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Bud Hover’s road to directorship of the Washington State Department of Agriculture began in 1938 when his mother and her family loaded their belongings on a truck and left North Dakota, headed west at 35 miles per hour.

Hover calls it a scene from The Grapes of Wrath. His mother at

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Good Point: Forecasting future Asian import demand

March 1st, 2013|0 Comments

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More information on the study is available on the Web site www.e-belrose.com or by sending an e-mail to belrose@pullman.com.

Leading ­deciduous fruit exporters around the world are seeing demand in many traditional markets either stagnant or declining. They agree that Asian markets offer the best future growth prospects because of their

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U.S. pears head to China

March 1st, 2013|0 Comments

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The Pear Bureau Northwest is giving this framed God of Fortune poster to Chinese importers to demonstrate the profit opportunities for U.S. pears.
Photo courtesy of Pear Bureau Northwest

U.S. pear producers were allowed to ship fresh pears to China for the first time in January and hope it will soon become

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Red-fleshed apples

January 15th, 2013|0 Comments

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The red trait, which is common in crab apples and ornamentals, produces flesh colored anywhere from pink to deep red. Skin color and flesh color are inherited separately, so yellow apples can have red flesh.
Photos courtesy of IFORED

Next Big Thing’s last big thing was the SweeTango apple. Now, it appears,

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Wine Wheel of Fortune

January 15th, 2013|0 Comments

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California is facing an emerging wine shortage, according to Stephens Moody with Turrentine Brokerage in Novato, California.

Turrentine, which handles bulk wines, grapes, and bottled wines, has developed a model of the typical wine cycle, which it calls the “Wine Business Wheel of Fortune.”

Speaking at a grower caucus presented in November

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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 150 years or so—has been usurped by Gala, one of its grandchildren.

It’s not because Gala is a better apple, British journalist Michael Leapman pointed out

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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, Chile. All are partners in a new company called Chilean South Apples, or CHISA.

Reggie Collins, chief executive officer of Chelan Fruit Cooperative, says the goal

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The clubs of Quebec

September 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Apple growers in Canada’s Quebec Province march to the beat of a different drummer. They are much more tightly organized than are growers in the United States.

At the provincial level, all apple growers must be members of the Federation of Apple Growers of Quebec (see “Apple growers union gives market

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Apple growers’ union gives market power to Quebec growers

September 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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For a relatively small industry with annual apple production of about 6 million bushels, the apple growers of Quebec have a very substantial market power and are backed by loyal consumers who’d rather eat a Quebec McIntosh than any other apple. That market power is exercised through the Federation of

World awaits B.C. cherries

June 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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High quality, self-fertile cherry varieties developed in British Columbia, Canada, have become standards in the international cherry industry.

British Columbia’s own cherry industry is comparatively small, with just 4,500 acres planted, but cherry varieties developed in the province, such as Lapins, Skeena, Sweetheart, Sonata, Staccato, and many more, have become world

Organic plantings drop

May 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Organic tree fruit acreage in Washington State is on the decline overall, although plantings of organic Honeycrisp have increased significantly over the past few years, David ­Granatstein, Washington State University’s sustainable agriculture specialist, reported this winter.

Washington’s organic apple plantings have dropped from 15,735 acres to 14,296 acres since 2009. Fuji

Pests sneak into U.K.

April 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Two new pests—the brown marmorated stinkbug and spotted wing drosophila—have snuck into the United Kingdom but are not yet established there.

Two adult brown marmorated stinkbugs were intercepted at a U.K. airport in 2010 in passenger luggage on a flight from the United States, according to a report in the January

Export focus is not new

March 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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The Washington apple industry was exporting a significant percentage of its crop, long before the Washington Apple Commission was formed. In 1930, seven million boxes, or 25 percent of the crop, were sold overseas.

Until the 1970s, most exports went to Europe and were not considered profitable. Overseas markets were a

EU regulations stifle fruit exports

March 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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Pacific Northwest apple and pear exports to Europe have dropped dramatically since pesticide ­regulations were harmonized among members of the European Union. Restrictive pesticide residue limits of the European Union have required U.S. producers to adopt chemical use practices and compliance systems unique to the EU market, and that’s cut

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Easier access to MRLs

March 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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Growers using Washington State University’s online Decision Aid System this season will be able to consider pesticide maximum residue limits (MRLs) of top foreign markets when they make their crop protection chemical decisions.

In recent years, producing fruit for export markets has become more complicated because pesticide registration and setting of

Heed global trends

March 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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The global food business is increasingly complex, with new players, new linkages, and cause-and-effect reactions that impact food supply and prices, says Paul Roberts, journalist and author of The End of Food.

Growers need to be aware of event chains (events that occur continents away but have a chain reaction

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Cripps Pink is in expansion mode

March 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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Lady in Red is one of several highly colored strains of Cripps Pink that will be marketed as Pink Lady. Lady in Red will be the variety name marked on the shipping cartons
Photo courtesy Coregeo

About half the Cripps Pink apples being planted worldwide are new, improved mutations, which could help

Access to China is near

February 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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It’s been almost two decades since the U.S. pear industry began pushing for access to China, but it finally appears that the market might open during the 2012-2013 season. “This has been a long-term effort to gain access for pears,” noted Mark Powers, vice president at the Northwest

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Exports boost pear returns

February 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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James Foreman advocates expanding exports and giving up segments of the U.S. market to Argentina Lowering f.o.b. prices in a big crop year does nothing to benefit growers, says James Foreman, operations manager with Foreman Fruit and Land Company in Wenatchee, Washington. But exporting more

Globalization threatens wine terroir

February 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Globalization has brought the world of wine to our front door, offering endless choices for consumers and great opportunities for wine producers. But the global mass market of wine also brings challenges of quantity over quality, a lack of confidence by the consumer in making choices, and threat to the

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MAP funds granted for stone fruits

February 1st, 2012|0 Comments

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Dissolution of the California Tree Fruit Agreement created opportunity for Washington State stone fruit, says Ingrid Mohn, FAS market development specialist. About $250,000 was redirected to a new market access program for Washington’s stone fruit.

With federal budget cuts looming, the future is murky for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s market

Why do new varieties fail?

January 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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In spite of the 70 breeding programs around the world developing new tree fruit cultivars, most new varieties are disappointments and don’t succeed, says a European researcher. Growers, packers, and marketers have responded well to improved clones of established varieties like Gala and Golden Delicious apples, but the industry has

Reds likely to reign overseas

January 15th, 2012|0 Comments

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As the Washington State apple crop shifts in terms of varieties and volumes, the Washington Apple Commission must match its export efforts to what is happening in the industry, says Todd Fryhover, commission president.

The big upsurge in Honeycrisp, which is selling at high prices on the domestic market, will likely

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U.K. growers try to lower residues

December 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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Jerry Cross is in charge of entomology and plant pathology at East Malling Research, where trials to minimize residues on fruit were successful.
Geraldine Warner

A “name and shame” policy by the British government several years ago prompted apple growers to make efforts to reduce the residues on their fruit.

The government does

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Southeastern peaches enter Mexican markets

September 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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H-2A workers in the Titan Farms packing plant cheered when they found their peaches were going to their home country.
Richard Lehnert

For the first time since 1994, peaches from the southeastern United States moved into stores in Mexico in June this year.

The breakthrough came after about five years of work by

Reviving the British pear

September 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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British pear growers have been removing pear orchards at an alarming rate because they’ve not been profitable. Now, the East Malling Research Center in the United Kingdom is trying to demonstrate the feasibility of growing pears using modern systems.

It’s been reported that U.K. pear acreage dropped by 40 percent between

U.K. grower demos modern concepts

September 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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Tony Sunnucks, a fruit grower in Kent, England, is developing a concept pear orchard financed by the U.K. fruit marketer OrchardWorld.

The concept orchard at Sunnuck’s Rankins Farm at Linton includes the new pear varieties Delsanne, Gourmande, Verdi, and Elliott and is designed to show how growers can achieve high yields

European rule takes the shine off apples

August 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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The European Union is refusing to accept apples treated with a wax containing morpholine or other amines, which means U.S. packers exporting to Europe need to switch to other types of wax or no wax at all.

The issue arose in 2010 after an independent laboratory test revealed morpholine residues of

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Buy local gets a boost

August 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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Many growers have children in school and have been frustrated that their taxes have been paying for apples from competitors for school lunch programs.

The “buy local” movement got a shot in the arm this spring when the U.S. Department of Agriculture implemented a new rule allowing some buyers—especially schools—to specify

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Malaysian labeling will be required

July 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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Mark Powers is vice president of the Northwest Horticultural Council.
Jim Black

Fruit exporters should gear up to label cartons destined for Malaysia in the Bahasa Malaysia language starting August 1, says Mark Powers, vice president with the Northwest Horticultural Council.

Initially, the government of Malaysia announced a January 1, 2011, implementation date

Opportunities for cherry exports

July 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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The Pacific Northwest cherry harvest is running later than usual this year, which could open up opportunities in export markets.

Because of a late spring, shipments were expected to peak after the Fourth of July weekend, which is a crucial time for cherry promotions and sales. However, the season has been

WSU to protect new varieties

June 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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Washington State University is taking steps to protect its new apple variety, WA 2, in overseas countries. WA 2, the first variety to emanate from its apple breeding program, is moving into the commercialization phase and is available to Washington growers only.

Dr. Kate Evans, WSU’s pome fruit breeder, said plant

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China has big appetite for U.S. cherries

May 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Northwest cherry industry representatives saw hundreds of street hawkers selling fresh cherries on the outskirts of Yantai during a recent trip to northern China.

Asian markets traditionally have been major importers of U.S. cherries, but a new player in the Far East—with a big appetite—has altered the export priorities of Pacific

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Cherries in China

May 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Cherries as far as the eye can see, and in a hodgepodge puzzle of different growing practices and varieties is how B.J. Thurlby sums up the cherry production he saw in northern China on a mid-April trip.

Thurlby, president of the Washington State Fruit Commission, which administers the Northwest Cherry Growers,

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Cherry production in China

May 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Up to 20 acres of cherries were seen being grown under greenhouse covers during a trip to learn about China’s cherry production taken by the Northwest Cherry Growers. The greenhouse entry doors were often locked and guarded by mean-looking dogs.

A country the size of China could overwhelm U.S. cherry producers

More export focus needed

February 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Because of an increasingly competitive U.S. market, the salvation of the Washington apple industry will be overseas markets, and the industry will need to become more export oriented than in the past, says agricultural economist Dr. Desmond O’Rourke.

O’Rourke sees little promise in the domestic market, where per-capita consumption of fresh

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Export funding increase unlikely

February 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Todd Fryhover, president of the Washington Apple Commission, is concerned about a possible decrease in federal funding for export promotions.
Photo by Geraldine Warner

Since generic apple promotions in the U.S. market are a thing of the past, export markets seem to offer better opportunities for selling more apples, Washington Apple Commission

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Small orchards, but big impact

January 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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South Tyrol extension advisor Bernhard Botzner shows the concrete poles used for trellis supports.

Published January 15, 2011
Don’t let the small size fool you. Individual apple orchards near Merano, in Italy’s Vinschgau Valley, may only be a few acres in size, but the valley has trees planted wall to wall, and

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Why Italian orchards are so productive

January 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Dr. Martin Thalheimer says the South Tyrol’s high productivity in apples is due to a combination of factors—uniform, high-density plantings, a strong extension service, and adoption of modern orchard management techniques.

Published January 15, 2011
The high apple yields in Italy’s South Tyrol region are a result of improved management practices, the

Italian extension service is well funded

January 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Published January 15, 2011
The South Tyrol Advisory Service performs many of the same services that Cooperative Extension does in the United States—educating growers about integrated pest management, irrigation, fertility, and nutrition. The biggest difference is funding.

The budgets of Cooperative Extension in the United States are often squeezed when state and

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Staying profitable

January 15th, 2011|0 Comments

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Hillsides near Bolzano are planted to apples and wine grapes, utilizing every meter of land.

Published January 15, 2011

An international group of tree fruit industry members traveled to northern Italy last November to see how mechanization has been adopted in high-density tree fruit plantings. The group saw the latest technology at

Economic outlook for tree fruit

January 1st, 2011|0 Comments

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The economic outlook for the tree fruit­ ­industry in Washington State and the Pacific Northwest is quite good. This conclusion may surprise many readers accustomed to the steady stream of negative stories in the media. However, the reason for this optimism about the fruit industry is that it now services

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More quantity than quality in China

December 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Chinese packers have been unable to convince growers to update orchards to improve yields and color. Shandong growers are unwilling to lose production in the short term in order to improve future production.

Although China is the world’s top apple producer in terms of volume, its apple producers have a limited

Quick Bites

September 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Large apple crop forecast
The Washington apple industry expects to harvest a record 108.8 million boxes of fresh apples this fall. That’s six million boxes more than during the 2009-2010 season that just ended, but only slightly more than the 108.3 million boxes shipped two years ago.

“This number, even if it

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Apple Lines

August 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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John Baker, center, talks with supermarket staff in Dubai, a major market for Washington apples.

The Washington Apple Commission is running a training ­program for supermarkets in export markets to help retailers boost their sales of Washington apples and to ensure that consumers receive a high-quality product.

The commission began the retail-training

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China: big country, small wine market

August 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Wine importer and distributor Scott Hitchcock, left, sampled Butch Milbrandt’s wines (Milbrandt Vineyards) during the Washington Wine Commission’s Wine Experience. Hitchcock came to learn about the potential of importing Washington wines into China.

China and its 1.4 billion population is one of the world’s largest markets for many products. For wine,

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Yakima Valley wines in China

August 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Hyatt Vineyards, in the Yakima Valley subappellation of Rattlesnake Hills, was founded as a small estate vineyard surrounding the winery in 1983 by Leland and Lynda Hyatt.

What appeared to be a normal wine tasting visit by two locals and two foreigners has turned into a surprising niche market for Zillah,

Good Point – Kevin Moffitt

July 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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A recent study shows how successful the Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development programs are and can be. It would be a shame if the funding for these programs were reduced in the upcoming Farm Bill. The United States Department of Agriculture has already begun holding listening sessions

Good Stuff

June 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Voliam label expansion
The California Department of Pesticide Regulation has approved a label expansion for Voliam Xpress insectide, which allows its use on pome and stone fruits, and other crops. Voliam, developed by Syngenta Crop Protection, contains two active ingredients with different modes of action: the diamide insecticide chlorantraniliprole and the

Quarantine alternative

June 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Dr. Wee Yee, entomologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Yakima, Washington, is conducting research to assess the likelihood of cherry fruit fly becoming established in certain overseas markets that are concerned about potential infestations of the pest, such as Indonesia and Thailand. Dr. Lisa Neven is cooperating on

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Moth poses little risk in Taiwan

May 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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Dr. Lisa Neven is studying the survival of codling moth larvae in tropical conditions.

There is little risk of codling moth larvae shipped in apples to Taiwan resulting in the pest becoming established in that country, research by Dr. Lisa Neven, insect physiologist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s research laboratory

Good to Go

May 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Italy orchard tour
Susan Pheasant and Mauricio Frías are offering an intensive technical tour of South Tyrol orchards in November to learn about high-density orchard systems, production practices, and specialized machinery for tree fruit. The tour will begin in Venice and include key visits in Bolzano, Ferrara, and Bologna. Also included

Eye on the Middle East

April 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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Dubai, one of the United Arab Emirates, is the major fruit import port in the Persian Gulf with its trade tentacles reaching to Yemen in the south, Iraq in the north, and Sudan in the west. It’s difficult to separate out ­specific countries as independent and uninfluenced by the Dubai

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Last Bite – Pioneer of exports to Europe

April 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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The firm of Simons, Shuttleworth, and French Company, Inc., was one of the first to specialize in exporting apples from the Pacific Northwest to England and the European continent.

The company was organized under the laws of the State of New York in 1907 and formally incorporated in 1908. The company

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Apple Lines–Full access to China needed

April 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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China is open to Red Delicious apples from Washington. Whereas Red Delicious can be shipped direct to major markets in China, Gala and Granny Smith apples reach China through the gray market via Hong Kong.

Gala and Granny Smith apples grown in Washington State remain officially excluded from China. The market

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Cherries in Chile

January 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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Shawn Gay visits a high-producing Bing, Lapins, and Sweetheart orchard in the Puente Negro area of Chile.

Like other fruit-growing regions around the world, Chile is seeing a rapid expansion of its cherry industry. Its wide range of climates allows its cherry growers to have cherries on the world market at

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Taking cover

January 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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Iuar Iraira (foreground), manager of the Fundo Agua Buena orchard (in the center picture), discusses the Voen louvered rain cover with international visitors. The area, south of Temuco, receives more than 70 inches of rainfall annually.

Producing some of the latest maturing cherries in Chile is Leonardo Salas’s competitive advantage—and perhaps

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Nursery goes high-tech

January 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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This machine carries five workers on seats through a block of nursery trees to remove suckers. The machine can be used without seats but with different attachments for spraying and weed control.

A nursery in Chile is using the latest equipment to cut the labor involved in growing the branched trees

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Swiss company expands to Chile

January 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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Ditzler uses five machines to harvest sweet dark cherries for processing into yogurts and ice creams. Cherries are harvested day and night.

A Swiss company that produces frozen fruits for yogurts and ice creams is growing some of its cherries in Chile.

Arturo Garcia, general manager of an orchard at Morza, Chile,

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Cherries with a challenge

January 15th, 2010|0 Comments

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Chilean cherry grower Pablo Garcés (fourth from left) is general manager and part owner of 800 growing hectares (almost 2,000 acres), half of the acreage is planted with cherries.

Former agronomist Oscar Letelier decided to become an orchardist the hard way by growing organic cherries. He is one of very few

Argentine cherry

January 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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Argentina, the second-largest country in South America, has a small but expanding cherry industry. Around half of the countrys 7,000 acres of cherry orchards are in the state of Mendoza, which is located east of Santiago, Chile, in the eastern foothills of the Andes mountain range. It is the earliest

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The race to market

January 1st, 2010|0 Comments

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A group of more than 30 cherry growers and horticulturists from around the world took part in a recent tour in Argentina and Chile organized by Susan Pheasant, Mauricio Frias, and Claudia Acosta. Geraldine Warner compiled this report.

Orchardists in northern Argentina aim to be the first on the world market

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Nursery perspective

December 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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These finished nursery trees will soon be harvested and prepared for later planting by growers.

With the proliferation of new tree fruit varieties released in the last decade, the next ten years should spark consumer interest and excitement in the tree fruit category, say nursery representatives.

The most important change that Wanda

Australia’s water crisis forces changes

December 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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Dealing with rising temperatures may be a conundrum for fruit growers confronting ­climate change, but in Australia it’s been ­complicated by widespread drought since 2003.

Two years ago, participants in the annual International Fruit Tree Association conference and tour heard how competition for water rights, a relatively new phenomenon here in

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Changes will come faster. Will you keep up?

December 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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Agricultural economist

Two decades ago, at a time when the industry had yet to produce more than 60 million boxes of apples and Red Delicious made up almost 75 percent of the crop, agricultural economist Dr. Des O’Rourke warned that it would be difficult for Washington to hold onto its market

Optimistic about the crop

November 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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The Washington Apple Commission is focusing its export efforts this year on markets that have the potential to take more large-sized apples.

The commission is matching its strategy with the 2009 crop. The volume appeared to be below the initial industry estimate of 107 million boxes, commissioners reported at their October

M.9 prevails in Poland

November 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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Malling 9 is the most popular apple rootstock in Poland, closely followed by M.26, but growers are also using dwarfing Polish rootstocks, and Geneva rootstocks are being tested.

Dr. Alojzy Czynczyk at the Research Institute of Pomology and Floriculture in Skierniewice, Poland, said the climatic conditions in Poland are variable, with

Apple Lines – Todd Fryhover

September 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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As we move together into another apple harvest, the Washington Apple Commission strives to evolve to mirror the ever-­changing export market requirements, matching international consumer tastes and preferences with Washington growers’ commitment to growing the Best Apples on Earth. To achieve our goals, we have made a few changes to

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Pear export prospects

September 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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A family samples USA pears in a supermarket in the city of Dubai. The United Arab Emirates is a significant market for USA Pears.

Jeff Correa, Pear Bureau Northwest

The Pear Bureau is looking forward to marketing one of the industry’s largest pear crops for the 2009-2010 season. With warm summer weather

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Pear access negotiations continue

September 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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The United States and China are each hoping the other will grant permission to export pears.

The United States has been requesting access to China for U.S. pears since the 1990s. On its part, China already ships two varieties of pears—Ya and fragrant pears—to the United States but wants access for

Apple Lines – Todd Fryhover

August 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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Adversity provides opportunity. This is the mantra for the 2008–2009 Washington apple season. We’re facing a world economic downturn, plummeting foreign currency exchange rates, import protectionism, static domestic apple demand, and the largest Washington apple crop in history—simultaneously. What more adversity could be heaped upon the Washington apple industry this

Swiss interested in Geneva stocks

August 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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Fireblight-resistant apple rootstocks developed at Cornell University in Geneva, New York, could secure a place in the Swiss apple industry, members of the International Fruit Tree Association heard during their annual meeting in last February in Germany.

Dr. Simon Egger, horticulturist with the Agroscope-Changins Wädenswil Research Station in Switzerland, reported on

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Good Question – Pear Industry Issue

July 1st, 2009|0 Comments

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Rob Peterson
Hood River, Oregon
Mexican tariff
Peterson said the most pressing issue is the 20 percent tariff on U.S. pears, cherries, and apricots imposed by Mexico in March. Mexico imposed the tariff after the U.S. Congress voted to end a pilot program allowing some Mexican trucks to enter the United States,