Michigan volumes should be up significantly from last year and closer in size to the larger-than-normal 2009 crop, said Barry Winkel, general manager of Benton Harbor, Mich.-based Greg Orchards & Produce Inc.
“Driving through orchards, there are a lot of apples out there,” Winkel said.”We’re expecting way more than last year.”
Abundant rain and aggressive thinning should ensure good size, and quality also was expected to be very good, he said.
Growers were harvesting ginger golds the week of Aug. 1, and paula reds and other early varieties were expected to begin shipping in about the third week of August, Winkel said. Red delicious and other major varieties were expected to begin shipping by mid-September.
Fire blight will likely cut into Greg Orchards’ gala and jonagold volumes this year, Winkel said. But he had heard no reports of stink bug.
“Maybe we’ll dodge it again,” he said.