By U.S. Apple Association
USApple calculates the USDA’s August estimate of 253.6 million bushels (down 3 percent from the 2019 crop) would be the 9th largest crop since the government department began reporting apple production in the 1940s.
The 2019 apple crop was the 6th largest crop in history, said the U.S. Apple Association recently at the organization’s 125th Annual Crop and Outlook Marketing Conference. Apple exports also rebounded during the past year, with a 15 percent increase in volume.
At 262 million (42lb units) bushels, the 2019 apple crop was up 8 percent in volume from 2018.
The industry continued the trend to adapt to consumer preferences by increasing production of Honeycrisp, which is expected to rise by 12 percent, moving it ahead of Granny Smith and Fuji into third place in national production.
“With the 2018 crop, Red Delicious lost the position it had held for decades as the largest volume variety to Gala,” said USApple Director of Regulatory and Industry Affairs Mark Seetin. “Projections for the current crop are that Gala will continue to expand its edge over Red Delicious and will remain the largest volume variety produced.”
The 2020 top five produced apple varieties are: 1) Gala 2) Red Delicious 3) Honeycrisp 4) Granny Smith and 5) Fuji.
The top 3 varieties (Gala, Red Delicious and Honeycrisp) comprise 48 percent of all production. The top five varieties (adding Granny Smith and Fuji) comprise 67 percent.