Winter Lingers for Apple Harvest


Published 08/27 2014 06:19PM

Updated 08/28 2014 09:14AM

The bitterly cold temperatures and record-breaking snowfall of this past winter are long gone, but its effects remain.

Now, we're beginning to see its impacts on this year's apple harvest, local growers say it could mean fewer apples this year.

WFFT investigated to find out how much more you will pay for apples the next time you visit your local grocery store.

Some varieties did pretty well through the winter, but others you can still see some of the effects.

And not just this winter, but spring, and also crops from prior years.

"There's a little bit of misshapen fruit and some fruit with little scars on it, where the freezes killed tissue that was in the little tiny bud that was growing inside the twig,” says apple farmer Phillip Foster.

It's August, but local apple orchards are still feeling the chills of the snowpocalipse.

"We had a little bit of damage to trees this winter. There's some varieties that didn't fare well. A few tries died, and a few of them looked kind of sick, but they're starting to look better now,” foster says.

Foster owns the Phil Foster U-Pick Orchard near Huntington.

He says the winter, combined with a cool spring, and a record apple harvest last year has resulted in a smaller yield with smaller fruit for this fall.

He says since apple prices were so low last year, expect them to cost more now.

"It may, but people may use it as leverage to try to make it appear that the price needs to go up,” Foster says.

The drought summer of 2012 was one of the smallest apple harvests in years, and fall festivals almost didn't have any fruit.

But he says, don't worry, you'll get your apple dumplings this year.

"Like I say, most commercial orchards are going to have an average to maybe a little better than average crop, and there may be some that don't,” Foster says.

The orchard down here opens up for you pick them on September 10th and they still expect to see a pretty decent crop.

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