Domex Superfresh Growers has been gearing up for the new crop of Washington apples in the fall. The official estimate will be announced Aug. 10, however currently the industry range of estimates are from a low of 110 million boxes to a high of 125 million boxes.
The new crop of apples is expecting to be harvested beginning the first week of August.Currently, sizing looks to peak on 88s/80s and larger.
For each of the past 20 years, Domex has measured the size of fruit on the trees around the second week of July. This year's fruit has been at a historically large size.
"The one thing that we all know in farming is that nothing is final until the fruit is off the tree, and things can always change over the next eight weeks," Howard Nager, vice president of marketing for Domex Superfresh Growers, said in a press release. "But at this point, unless something much unexpected occurs, large sizes should be dominant."
Promotional volumes should occur approximately 14 days earlier this year, which will provide for good Labor Day promotional opportunities, according to Nager, who added that with the Northwest cherry crop potentially ending 14 days earlier than last year, the door will open for the start of an ideal apple season.
Regional crop availability looks to have rebounded, with sizing leaning towards 100s and smaller.
There was a significant dollar contribution at retail from Washington apples this past season. As Washington apples filled in for short regional crops, Nielsen data revealed dollar sales for the September-through-December 2012 timeframe showed a 14 percent increase over the previous year, while the September-April period saw a dollar increase of over 16 percent over the previous year.