A second consecutive increase in apple shipments from all of the Eastern states has been predicted by a recent USDA forecast.
New York state us the second-largest apple shipping state in America and has an estimated volume for this season of 28.5 million 42-pound carton equivalents. This is a two percent increase over 2016’s 28.1 million cartons, but well below 30 million-plus production of the three season of 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Pennsylvania the second-largest apple shipper among the Eastern states and is forecast to have 11.7 million cartons, which would be up 11 percent over 2016’s 10.5 million cartons. Virginia’s estimate is 5.2 million cartons, up a whopping 22 percent over a year-ago when volume stood at 4.3 million boxes. Virginia avoided a devastating spring freeze, unlike a year ago, so it should ship way more fruit this year.
West Virginia is predicted to have 2.2 million cartons, which is 18 percent higher than the 1.9 million cases from last year.
But to put this in perspective, Washington state should ship 159.5 million cartons of apples in 2017, down eight percent from the 174.3 million cartons in 2016. Meanwhile, Michigan’s estimate is 19 million cartons, off 32 percent from nearly 28 million a year ago.
In the Gardners, PA areas the first harvested apples of the season took place the week of August 7th with, ginger golds, while galas and Honeycrisps followed within days.
New Eastern Apple Varieties
In New York two of the newest apple varieties are on the brink of major shipping increases. Crunch Time Apple Growers of Wolcott, NY, a grower cooperative, which has 145 growers, and ships about 60 percent of the apples in New York. It expects to load 100,000-boxes for the first time this season, which will be the fourth year for SnapDragon and fifth for RubyFrost. This would nearly double the shipments this season for these varieties. The new crop of SnapDragons will be on the market in the fall, with RubyFrost shipping out of storage in January.