New York Field Offic

Fact Finders for Agriculture"

(518) 457-5570


Contact:  Marisa Reuber
Friday, October 10, 2008



Based on conditions as of October 1, apple production in New York is forecast at 1.20 billion pounds, up 4 percent from the August forecast but down 8 percent from the 2007 crop of 1.31 billion pounds.  On October 5, apple harvest was 61 percent completed, in line with the average of 60 percent.  Across the state, production increased from the August 1st estimate due to better than expected production following the destructive June hail storms.  Apples not affected by hail had good quality, size, and color.

In the Lake Ontario fruit region, most growers faced a difficult year with numerous reports of hail damage.  The apples had good color and size, but poor quality.  This will send many apples to the processing market.  Growers not hit by hail had excellent growing conditions and great quality.  In the Hudson Valley fruit region, growers reported poor quality and quantity due to hail and frost.  The few growers not affected by hail had apples of excellent quality and size.  The recent cool weather also helped produce above average color.  Growers in the Lake Champlain fruit region reported that harvest was progressing well and apples had good size.  Some growers were hurt by freeze and hail and would be allocating more apples to processing.

U.S. apple production for the 2008 crop year is forecast at 9.24 billion pounds, up slightly from the August 1 forecast and up 1 percent from 2007. 

The 2008 New York all grape crop is forecast at 165 thousand tons, unchanged from the August forecast but down 8 percent from last year’s production of 180 thousand tons.  On October 5, grape harvest was 69 percent completed compared to the average of 48.  Growers continue to look for favorable weather in hopes of increasing sugar content.

In the Lake Erie fruit region, spring frost damaged many acres of grapes.  A couple reports of hail and disease also contributed to lower production this year.  A larger than expected crop, cool growing season, and wet weather have combined to cause concern among growers in Chautauqua County about late ripening grapes.  The grapes were struggling to reach minimum sugar levels, and growers hope there is not an early frost this year before the grapes are harvested.  The Finger Lakes region experienced sunny weather, warm days, and cool nights, which have combined to make a great harvesting season.  Earlier hail damage hurt production for some growers, but grapes not affected by the hail are of good quality.  Long Island growers received a lot of rain this year.  This has resulted in disease, hail damage, and low yields.  Grapes not affected by the rain were of good quality and clean.

         U.S. grape production is forecast at 7.21 million tons, virtually unchanged from the August 1 forecast but up 3 percent from 2007.