Michigan’s official crop estimate of 22.5 million bushels (946 million pounds) of apples was announced as part of the USApple Outlook meeting which was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The 2020 estimate is in line with the size of the 2019 crop.
“Many factors contribute to the size of an apple crop, including weather and the size of the previous year’s crop. To make the estimate, growers and other industry experts report on what they are seeing in various regions of the state, then come to a consensus on the crop size estimate,” said Diane Smith, executive director of the Michigan Apple Committee.
According to the USDA, Michigan harvested 22.5 million bushels of apples in 2019. There are more than 14.9 million apple trees in commercial production, covering 34,500 acres on 775 family-run farms in Michigan.
“Growers used many tools to prevent damage from frost in early May. While some areas of the state were impacted more significantly than others, overall we are hearing reports of a quality crop with minimal frost damage,” said Smith. “Growers report that Honeycrisp, in particular, are looking exceptionally good this year, which means we’ll have great opportunities for retail programs for that consumer favorite variety.”
Michigan Apples are typically shipped from mid-August all the way through the following June. Michigan Apple packers and shippers work throughout the year to bring Michigan Apples to more than 30 states and 18 countries worldwide, according to Smith.
“Michigan Apple growers dedicate their lives to producing fresh, flavorful, high-quality apples. As always, they have been working hard to produce this year’s crop and are excited to share their great-tasting apples with consumers this fall” said Smith.