Rainier Fruit had a big presence at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit expo. Randy Abhold, president of Rainier Fruit, Selah, Wash., (far right), said there are plenty of strong apple promotion opportunities, starting now. ( The Packer )

ANAHEIM, Calif. — “Stack them high and sell them cheap” may not be great modern-day merchandising advice.

However, a strong crop of apples in Washington state will offer plenty of retail promotion opportunities for conventional and organic fruit, Randy Abhold, president of Rainier Fruit, Selah, Wash., said.
“We’ve got some good promotions and some good activity already and there is plenty of promotions lined out,” he said.

Harvest was about 80% to 85% complete by mid-October, he said. 
For current promotions, Rainier features good supply of Honeycrisp, Jazz, galas, fujis, and other varieties.

“We’ve got a good crop, a good mix of sizes, and it feels good to have this season started,” he said. 

Current estimates call for a Washington apple crop in the 135-million to 140-million-box range, Abhold said.

“There might be a little bit of fruit left behind, but it’s that second or third pick stuff that maybe doesn’t need to be picked because there is still enough volume for us to market as an industry,” he said.