Aug 27, 2013
Wisconsin cranberry crop up 5 percent

The Cranberry Marketing Committee, in conjunction with USDA, recently announced that Wisconsin is projected to yield 4.9 million barrels of cranberries during the 2013 fall harvest – an increase of 5 percent over the 2012 crop.

Based on the projections and with cooperation from the weather, Wisconsin will be the country’s top cranberry-producing state for the 19th consecutive year, according to the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association (WSCGA).

“We had a late spring, combined with good weather and well-timed rain, which all contribute to a healthy and plentiful crop,” said Tom Lochner, WSCGA’s executive director. “We’ve had very successful crops in Wisconsin for the past several years, as well as increased supply coming from Canada, which has led to increased inventory and a downward pressure on grower returns. The industry is focused now on further increasing the demand for cranberries.”

Lochner said that for the past several years the cranberry industry as a whole has been focused on good growing practices and increasing marketing efforts, especially overseas, to grow demand for cranberries. Over the last decade, cranberry exports have increased from less than 10 percent of Wisconsin’s crop to nearly 33 percent.

According to a University of Wisconsin report, Wisconsin’s cranberry industry has an annual economic impact on the state of $300 million and supports 3,400 jobs from its 21,000 acres. Wisconsin’s annual cranberry harvest will begin in late September or early October.

The Cranberry Marketing Committee, which bases its crop estimates on grower surveys combined with an economic model, also made crop projections for other top cranberry producing states. Those projections are: Massachusetts at 2.1 million barrels, New Jersey at 530,000 barrels, Oregon at 420,000 barrels and Washington at 150,000 barrels. The nationwide forecast is expected to be up 3 percent from 2012.

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