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Opal apple verified as non-GMO

FirstFruits seeks to head off confusion with a GMO apple that might be approved.

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Is fresh best?

Study shows processed fruits and vegetables can be a good option.

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USApple president visits the other Washington

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Jim Bair, president of the U.S. Apple Association, visited Washington State this week for the first time since taking over the helm of the organization from Nancy Foster at the beginning of this year.

Bair, who

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Strong cherry crop possible

Fruit Commission expands export efforts

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Opal apple verified non-GMO

FirstFruits heads off confusion with a GMO-apple that might be approved.

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WSU announces drawing for WA 38 apple trees

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Washington State University will hold a random drawing to decide who will be able to plant WA 38, the latest variety from the university’s apple breeding program, during the first two years trees become available.

Washington

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Washington Apple Commission revises roles in handling market access issues

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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

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Commission: More MAP dollars mean cherries go farther

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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

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Video: IFTA members visit century-old farm

Day’s Century Growers Inc. at Kelowna is one of the oldest and biggest pear producers in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley.

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Pruning demonstrations on stopping postharvest disease

Three Northwest industry groups have organized pruning demonstrations on how to stop postharvest diseases spread by infected Manchurian crabapple trees.

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Managing crab apple diseases

Crab apple disease management starts in the orchard with pruning.

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Clearing House to poll members on consolidation plan

Members of the Washington Growers Clearing House Association’s board of directors will discuss a tree fruit industry consolidation plan at their annual meeting on Thursday (February 20) in Wenatchee.

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Brandt brand is a masterpiece

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E.W. Brandt and Sons, a fruit growing, packing, and marketing operation in Wapato, Washington, is expanding its operations and is using RemBrandt ­Masterpiece fruit as its brand.

The moves reflect the company’s intensified focus on growing

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Oregon Cherry Growers promotes Weeden

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Grower-owned cooperative Oregon Cherry Growers has announced the promotion of Danny Weeden, ten-year company veteran, to the role of executive vice president, general manager, and chief financial officer.

Weeden, who was the cooperative’s vice president and

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Growers asked to tax themselves

Michigan growers to vote in February on proposed Tree Fruit Commission.

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Who will market WA 38?

Growers will be free to work with their regular packers and marketers and WSU will license them.

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Don’t give Honeycrisp away

Growers must deliver quality and marketers must hold out for high prices.

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Pear slicing is not perfected yet

Crunch Pak, the country’s largest fresh apple slicer, is still figuring out how best to slice pears.

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NFE’s Archer retires

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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

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Ripe pears mean more sales

Few consumers know how to check a pear for ripeness.

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Consider the market: Good Point

For a new apple variety to succeed, the marketer must understand what drives consumer and retailer preferences.

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Family business finds niche

The Tonnemakers say industry consolidation has left opportunities for small operators to sell directly to consumers.

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Crossing the border

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

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Growers have less need for loans

Apple growers continue to upgrade orchards, and lenders stay willing to lend.

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Apples and the futures market

If the futures market catches on, apple growers might get paid more for sort-outs.

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No ban on small cherries

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Washington’s fresh cherry packers will continue to be allowed to ship 12-row red cherries, members of the Washington Cherry Marketing Committee decided at their meeting in early December.

The committee commissioned economist Dr. Desmond O’Rourke to

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Feedback wanted on Washington’s consolidation plan

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Four Washington tree fruit industry organizations will consolidate next summer, and the question now is how best to do it, Robert Kershaw told members of the Washington State Horticultural Association at their annual meeting.

“People keep

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Going to market

Farmers' markets are booming, and fruit growers are capitalizing.

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The Cold Train

Since early in 2010, more produce--including apples--has been hauled east by rail.

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Grower comments wanted

Consolidation task force seeks input.

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Farmers’ markets provide feedback

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Steve Chinchiolo of River Bend Orchards in Ripon, California, has sold fruit through farmers’ markets since the late 1980s. While the direct marketing represents only a small portion of his total crop sales, the markets

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New Zealand’s ­audacious plan

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

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Good Stuff

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Early Pink Lady
An early maturing selection of Pink Lady (cultivar Cripps Pink) is available from Brandt’s Fruit Trees in Yakima, Washington.

The selection matures up to three weeks earlier than the standard Pink Lady. Another distinction

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Cider business flourishes

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Hard cider is a burgeoning industry in the Pacific Northwest, with 32 cideries at last count. But most people who learn how to make cider don’t give a thought to where they’re going to obtain the

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Hort Show time!

Washington and Michigan kick off the winter meeting season with packed programs.

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Lottery planned for WA 38

Washington State University expects big demand for trees of its latest apple release.

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Russian retailers see Washington harvest

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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

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Michigan apple industry sets shipment record

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The Michigan apple industry set new shipment records two weeks in a row in October, shipping 414,702 boxes of apples the week of October 12. According to the USDA-MDA Market News Service, the

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Free ag business training

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The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries is offering a day of free training for agricultural businesses on November 15 in Tumwater, Washington. A total of 19 classes will be offered on

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Tucker Cellars finds niche

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Third-generation wine grape grower Randy Tucker has made wine in Washington’s Yakima Valley for 30 years. Through the decades, he’s changed business plans at Tucker Cellars to fine-tune the winery’s market niche, but he’s now

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Finding the sweet spot

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As a grower and marketer of premium tree fruits for the fresh market, Craig Campbell had to adjust his mindset when he got into the cider-making business.

For fresh apples, he carefully monitors fruit maturity so

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Cherry sales sizzle in China

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

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They like it fresh

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If you’re a person who doesn’t like tattoos and body piercings, looks suspiciously at people with dark skin, doesn’t like to hear people speaking languages other than English, and hates people who text message while

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Apple growers to harvest larger crop

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The U.S. Apple Association lowered its estimate of the size of the United States apple crop by 3.2 million bushels from an estimate it made August 1.

At its annual Crop Marketing and Outlook Conference in

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Learning from last season

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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,

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Top 5 things your marketer would tell you

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1
We understand your risks and challenges. Mast said marketers understand the huge risks that growers take when planting orchards. Increasing production costs and retailers’ food safety requirements are just adding to the challenges.

“We want to

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Farm markets abound

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Many growers whose orchards are in or near urbanized or suburbanized landscapes grab the opportunity to sell their fruit directly to consumers. They do so either from markets they operate at the farm or at

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Apple commission hires export coordinator

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Randi Harnden will join the Washington Apple Commission as export coordinator starting October 7.

Her appointment is part of a staff realignment following the departure two months ago of Chris Scott, the commission’s export trade specialist.

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Winery showcases estate fruit

Kerry Shiels began as Côte Bonneville’s winemaker in 2009, after getting her master’s from the University of California, Davis, and working harvests for five different wineries in California, Australia, and Argentina.

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Pear Marketing: Connect with the customer

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Pears are a relatively small item in the fresh produce department, but they are still important to retailers. Pears make up 1.2 percent of fresh produce sales, compared with berries at 9.7 percent, apples at

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