Sep 3, 2019New England apple crop expected to be at least average
New England expects an average to above-average 2019 apple crop in most locations. The season has been running a little behind schedule at many orchards due to the long, hot summer, but the recent arrival of cool nights will bring the desired color and flavor to the apples before harvest.
Due primarily to budget cuts, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) no longer includes the individual New England states in its national forecast; these estimates are based on recent history and an informal poll of the region’s growers. New England’s fresh apple crop should total between 3.5 million and 4 million 42-pound boxes (the modern equivalent of a bushel).
Connecticut: 630,000 boxes
Maine: 1,140,000 boxes
Massachusetts: 1,000,000 boxes
New Hampshire: 440,000 boxes
Rhode Island: 45,000 boxes
Vermont: 400,000 boxes
Nationally, Washington state expects a huge crop, estimated at 165 million boxes by the U.S. Apple Association in its annual forecast, which is refined from the USDA survey. The next largest apple-producing states, New York (31.5 million), and Michigan (25.25 million), expect normal-sized crops.
New England’s growers will be watching the tariff situation with China and Mexico closely. If Washington state cannot export apples to these two countries, the New England marketplace could be flooded with apples from the Pacific Northwest, creating great competitive pressure with locally grown apples.
– New England Apples
Young Macoun apples at Easy Pickin’s Orchard in Enfield, Connecticut. Photo: Russell Steven Powell