2015 Apple Crop Forecast: Sunny

Apple Industry Experts are excited about the coming year, mainly because Americans are munching more apples.

That’s also a good sign for ensuing years, industry players from around the country heard over and over again in August at the U.S. Apple Association’s (USApple’s) 120th annual conference in Chicago.

Fresh apple consumption was forecast by USDA’s Economic Research Service to nearly hit 20 pounds per person during the 2014-15 season, noted Mark Seetin, USApple’s director of regulatory and industry affairs. Consumption hasn’t approached 19 pounds since the 18.8 pounds consumed in 2004-05, and took a dive for nearly a decade after.
The projected 19.7 pounds per person would be up nearly 30% from just four years ago, when it hit a low of 15.3 pounds.

“Consumption is at a 20-year high,” said Seetin, pointing to the popularity of new varieties such as Honeycrisp as the reason for the jump in consumption.

As far as the nation’s crop, USApple’s projection for the current seasons is 234.8 million bushels, which is 7.4 million bushels less than USDA’s August 12 forecast of 242.2 million. The most significant difference between the USApple and USDA estimates was with the Washington state crop, where regional industry experts reduced the USDA estimate of 150 million bushels by 7 million due to weather-related causes. There’s reason to trust the USApple estimate, as Seetin’s forecast has been more accurate than USDA’s in three of the past four years.

“We are looking forward to an excellent apple crop in 2015 with great-tasting, fresh apples being harvested steadily through November. Flavors will be exceptional and there will be a wide selection of varieties for all tastes,” noted Jim Bair, USApple’s president & CEO. “The industry’s export earnings and sales volumes reached new records last year and we look forward to another successful season.”

More than 300 people attended the conference, including 57 from 15 foreign countries. “It’s clear this conference has become the go-to source for critical apple industry information,” said Bair. “We’re thrilled with the growth.”

Top Grower Honored
The audience was treated to the presentation of American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower magazines’  Apple Grower of the YearSM award. Bill Dodd, a fourth-generation U-pick grower in Amherst, OH, was clearly moved by the honor, calling it one of the high points of his professional career.

Bill Dodd - Apple Grower of the Year 2015Dodd thanked all the people in the room for helping him in some way, especially his family. His voice cracked with emotion just slightly as he uttered the word “family,” mentioning and pointing to his wife, Diane.

He also made an announcement that would make any apple grower/father proud: “I got some great news recently, my son wants to continue our farm, so we’re excited about that.”

The presentation included one video highlighting his Hillcrest Orchards and another showing the industry luminaries who have been honored through the years. Dodd said a part of him still couldn’t believe it.

“Watching the list of growers who have won the award in the past,” he said, “I never dreamed I’d be mentioned with those people.”

After the ceremony, Dodd noted that those industry leaders had helped him immeasurably, and mingling with them through organizations like USApple, where Dodd once served as chairman, was vital.

“Selfishly, I take a lot from the people I’ve known, I’ve learned a lot,” he said. “The knowledge that I’ve gained by being part of those associations has rewarded me 10-fold. Organizations and associations are so important for this industry.”

Topics: , ,

Leave a Reply

One comment on “2015 Apple Crop Forecast: Sunny

Apple Grower of the Year Stories
Apple Grower of the Year
August 4, 2017
Road Trip Provides Hands-On Educational Opportunity [Opinion]
A visit to orchards in Upstate New York became a learning experience when my mom came along for the ride. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 2, 2017
Seeing the World’s Best Orchards Firsthand Through IFTA
Both American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower® magazines’ Apple Grower of the YearSM  Rod Farrow, and the man from whom he bought Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 2, 2017
To Succeed in Growing, First, You Must Communicate [Opinion]
The second step is to educate your employees, leading to the crucial last piece necessary for enduring success: buy-in. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 2, 2017
Meet the 2017 Apple Grower of the Year
The 2017 Apple Grower of the Year, Rod Farrow, has a unique perspective, as he’s been on both ends of succession, yet neither from his parents nor to his children. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
December 12, 2016
Apple Industry Statesman Fred Valentine Passes
The 2002 Apple Grower of the Year was known for his encyclopedic horticultural knowledge. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
December 6, 2016
2014 Apple Grower Of The Year Bill Evans Dies
Legendary apple grower Bill Evans, who along with his wife, Jeannette, farmed more apple acreage than any grower in the Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
September 19, 2016
2016 USApple Conference: Promising Crop, Apple Grower Of The Year Honored
Wenatchee, WA grower honored; only blemish on apple crop is the drought that shrank the harvest in the Northeast. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 27, 2016
Rock Steady U.S. Apple Crop Forecast
USApple predicts 2016 output will be just slightly higher than in 2015. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 22, 2016
Apple Crop Forecasts Live On Twitter
You'll be able to get up-to-the-minute reports of not only the various regions of the U.S., but key production regions around the world. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 1, 2016
Future Moves Fast In Apple Production [Opinion]
The Washington apple industry’s rapid change is evident during my many trips to the state in the past 20 years. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 1, 2016
A Thoroughly Modern Farmer Takes Apple Grower Of The Year Honor
The 2016 winner, Scott McDougall, largely stopped planting the tried and true, going mostly with exclusive and club varieties – and it paid off. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
October 2, 2015
2015 Apple Crop Forecast: Sunny
Crop is down from last year's record; new varieties drive consumption. Read More
Auto Draft
Apple Grower of the Year
September 11, 2015
Plenty Of Highlights From 2015 Apple Grower Of The Year Presentation
Bill Dodd, owner of Hillcrest Orchards in Amherst, OH, was honored as American Fruit Grower® magazine’s 2015 Apple Grower of Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 3, 2015
Bill Dodd Is An Apple Grower For Our Future
The judging for the Apple Grower Of The Year award is an interesting process that takes us through new twists Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 3, 2015
Bill Dodd, The 2015 Apple Grower Of The Year
  Informed of his selection as the 2015 Apple Grower Of The Year by American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower™ Read More
The Latest
Apple Grower of the Year
August 28, 2017
U.S. Apple Crop Forecast Down 8%
USApple predicts 2017 crop to be lower mostly because of smaller Michigan, Washington crops. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 22, 2017
U.S. Apple Association Hosts Annual Appl…
American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower® magazine’s 2017 Apple Grower of the Year will be officially presented on Thursday, Aug. 24, during the first day of the conference. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 5, 2017
A Look At Apple Grower Of The Year Winne…
Since 1989, American Fruit Grower and Western Fruit Grower magazines have honored influential apple growers such as Grady Auvil, George Lamont, Bill Zirkle, and Ralph Broetje. American and Western Fruit Grower presents a look at the winners of this prestigious award. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 4, 2017
Road Trip Provides Hands-On Educational …
A visit to orchards in Upstate New York became a learning experience when my mom came along for the ride. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 2, 2017
Seeing the World’s Best Orchards F…
Both American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower® magazines’ Apple Grower of the YearSM  Rod Farrow, and the man from whom he bought Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 2, 2017
To Succeed in Growing, First, You Must C…
The second step is to educate your employees, leading to the crucial last piece necessary for enduring success: buy-in. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 2, 2017
Meet the 2017 Apple Grower of the Year
The 2017 Apple Grower of the Year, Rod Farrow, has a unique perspective, as he’s been on both ends of succession, yet neither from his parents nor to his children. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
December 12, 2016
Apple Industry Statesman Fred Valentine …
The 2002 Apple Grower of the Year was known for his encyclopedic horticultural knowledge. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
December 6, 2016
2014 Apple Grower Of The Year Bill Evans…
Legendary apple grower Bill Evans, who along with his wife, Jeannette, farmed more apple acreage than any grower in the Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
September 19, 2016
2016 USApple Conference: Promising Crop,…
Wenatchee, WA grower honored; only blemish on apple crop is the drought that shrank the harvest in the Northeast. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 27, 2016
Rock Steady U.S. Apple Crop Forecast
USApple predicts 2016 output will be just slightly higher than in 2015. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 22, 2016
Apple Crop Forecasts Live On Twitter
You'll be able to get up-to-the-minute reports of not only the various regions of the U.S., but key production regions around the world. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 1, 2016
Future Moves Fast In Apple Production [O…
The Washington apple industry’s rapid change is evident during my many trips to the state in the past 20 years. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 1, 2016
A Thoroughly Modern Farmer Takes Apple G…
The 2016 winner, Scott McDougall, largely stopped planting the tried and true, going mostly with exclusive and club varieties – and it paid off. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
October 2, 2015
2015 Apple Crop Forecast: Sunny
Crop is down from last year's record; new varieties drive consumption. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
September 11, 2015
Plenty Of Highlights From 2015 Apple Gro…
Bill Dodd, owner of Hillcrest Orchards in Amherst, OH, was honored as American Fruit Grower® magazine’s 2015 Apple Grower of Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 3, 2015
Bill Dodd Is An Apple Grower For Our Fut…
The judging for the Apple Grower Of The Year award is an interesting process that takes us through new twists Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 3, 2015
Bill Dodd, The 2015 Apple Grower Of The …
  Informed of his selection as the 2015 Apple Grower Of The Year by American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower™ Read More