Northwest cherry growers shipped 20.8 million boxes of fresh fruit this year, exceeding some of their earlier expectations, according to a crop report released Friday by the Northwest Cherry Growers.
Estimates go through several revisions. If these figures hold, they would make 2016 the third largest crop in the region’s history, behind 23.2 million in 2014 and 23 million in 2012.
The 2016 cherry crop comes in just a hair above the industry’s first pre-season estimate of 20.7 million boxes, released on May 2 by the Yakima, Washington, industry group that markets fresh cherries for five Northwest states — Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Utah.
That figure dropped in subsequent periodic estimates as the season progressed due to suspicions that Bing production would be down due to poor pollination.
Cherry shippers sent out 7.8 million boxes in July, compared to 12.3 million in June in 2016.