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Fri May 29, 2015, 02:55 AM

Washington farmers are dumping unprofitable apples

SPOKANE, Wash. -- A record crop of apples, coupled with the West Coast port slowdown earlier this year, is taking a toll on Washington apple growers.

Nearly $100 million worth of apples that cannot be sold have been dumped into fields across central Washington, the nation’s most productive apple region. The apples are being left to rot and compost in the hot sun, an unusual occurrence for an industry that has found ways to market ever-growing crops.

“If we wouldn’t have had the port slowdown, we wouldn’t have needed this,” Todd Fryhover, president of the Washington Apple Commission in Wenatchee, said of the dumping.

He estimated that apple exporters lost at least three weeks of their season because of labor problems at West Coast ports. Along with a record supply of apples, that created surpluses that could not be shipped profitably to markets or processors, Fryhover said.

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/news/nation-world/national/article22584411.html

[font color=330099]Note that none of the farmers are dumping unprofitable weed...[/font]

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Arrow 25 replies Author Time Post
Reply Washington farmers are dumping unprofitable apples (Original post)
TexasTowelie May 2015 OP
msongs May 2015 #1
Art_from_Ark May 2015 #2
Javaman May 2015 #3
meow2u3 May 2015 #4
Javaman May 2015 #7
KatyMan May 2015 #8
Andy823 May 2015 #9
KamaAina May 2015 #11
Art_from_Ark May 2015 #25
Cleita May 2015 #12
mainer May 2015 #5
KamaAina May 2015 #13
mainer May 2015 #17
KamaAina May 2015 #18
closeupready May 2015 #6
Cleita May 2015 #10
Andy823 May 2015 #20
AgingAmerican May 2015 #14
Andy823 May 2015 #21
Bluenorthwest May 2015 #23
Liberal_in_LA May 2015 #15
Taitertots May 2015 #16
a la izquierda May 2015 #19
Andy823 May 2015 #22
Snobblevitch May 2015 #24

Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 03:12 AM

1. it's the american way, profits before people TPP forever and ever amen nt

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 03:13 AM

2. What a waste

When Northwest Arkansas was the nation's leading apple producer, they at least had local canning and vinegar companies that could handle excess production.

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Response to Art_from_Ark (Reply #2)

Fri May 29, 2015, 09:08 AM

3. should have made them into pie...

I like pie.

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Response to Javaman (Reply #3)

Fri May 29, 2015, 09:30 AM

4. They could have made applesauce out of the overripe apples

eom

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Response to meow2u3 (Reply #4)

Fri May 29, 2015, 03:58 PM

7. pie nt

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Response to Javaman (Reply #7)

Fri May 29, 2015, 04:02 PM

8. pie is always the correct choice n/t

n/t

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Response to meow2u3 (Reply #4)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:08 PM

9. They go to the processors

There they are used for applesauce, and juice, but when you have as huge a crop as there was last year, then can't ship them out, there are so many that go to the processor that sooner or later they can't use anymore.

I live in central Washington, worked in the apple industry for many years, and the problem is that so many big corporations are buying up orchards, or investing with the all ready big orchard growers that huge crops are doing to be a problem for anyone that is not "huge". Some growers just keep on planting more and more year after year. They buy up old orchards buy up land to turn into new orchards, and it seems like they will never stop.

Now the sheds do dump apples for people to use for feed for livestock, for free since they need places to dump them.

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Response to Art_from_Ark (Reply #2)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:14 PM

11. Northwest Arkansas was the nation's leading apple producer?

 

I never knew that! And, remember, I used to visit out there, albeit before apple season.

One hopes they still have plenty of local orchards like upstate New York has.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #11)

Sat May 30, 2015, 05:11 AM

25. Here's a bit of history about apples in NW Arkansas

Last edited Sat May 30, 2015, 05:48 AM - Edit history (1)

http://www.arkansasapplefestival.org/lincoln.htm

Production was centered in Benton and Washington counties. One of my teachers used to have a huge orchard, but I think that's been turned into yet another housing development. There was also a huge orchard along Old US 71 at the intersection with Apple Blossom Road in Lowell called Dixie Orchards, but it has long since been bulldozed. As has a large orchard between Farmington and Prairie Grove. There also used to be two vinegar companies in Rogers. One of them has been gone for many years, don't know about the other one.

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Response to Art_from_Ark (Reply #2)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:15 PM

12. That would be a solution and our Chinese overlords might consider setting up

factories with cheap labor to can the apple sauce and bottle the cider vinegar. I can't see anyone here setting up a situation that might create jobs in our present climate of free trade. More for them. Less for us.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 10:05 AM

5. That could feed a lot of pigs.

Couldn't have sold it as animal feed?

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Response to mainer (Reply #5)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:16 PM

13. One would think that ranchers in Washington would catch on to this

 

Free-range apple-fed meat would sell for plenty at Pike Place Market.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #13)

Fri May 29, 2015, 07:16 PM

17. My son's pigs loved apples!

They roamed a woodsy area with lots of old apples trees, and they'd nom nom nom.

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Response to mainer (Reply #17)

Fri May 29, 2015, 07:20 PM

18. And applewood-smoked bacon is a thing.

 

Where there are apple orchards, there's applewood. After a while the trees become unproductive and have to be cut down.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 10:22 AM

6. Unfortunate, but that's raw capitalism. Years ago, I remember

 

reading of a wine glut in France, and it got to the point where the government actually ended up paying farmers to pull up vineyards. It's been a while since that happened so the details may be different, but that's what they end up doing with an excess in the agriculture sector.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:12 PM

10. Actually, there are wild horses, deer and cattle in that area so I think maybe the apples are

not entirely going to waste.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #10)

Fri May 29, 2015, 07:22 PM

20. That's right

I see where apples have been dumped in fields, and the cattle seem to love them. The also dump them and the deer come down and eat them. We don't have many wild horses around here.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:16 PM

14. The market became flooded

 

...with cheap Chinese apples starting around 15 years ago. Many farmers where I grew up had to tear out their apple orchards and plant other crops because they couldn't compete anymore.

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Response to AgingAmerican (Reply #14)

Fri May 29, 2015, 07:28 PM

21. Never heard about that

I love in central Washington and a lot of our apples flooded the markets down there, but around here there are apple orchards everywhere. Thousands and thousands of acres, and still growing. Do you live back east? I do know that for awhile there the growers here where worried about China's apples, and some countries in Asia started buying from China, but we still grow tons of apples out here, and people are planting more and more everyday, Big corporate growers that is. Most of the smaller orchards have been bought out by the bigger growers.

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Response to AgingAmerican (Reply #14)

Fri May 29, 2015, 08:03 PM

23. Apple Exports by Country, 2013-most recent available year

 

Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of apples exports by country during 2013:

United States: $1,120,563,000 (14.0% of total apples exports)
China: $1,030,196,000 (12.9%)
Italy: $934,683,000 (11.7%)
Chile: $856,932,000 (10.7%)
France: $652,166,000 (8.2%)
Poland: $568,674,000 (7.1%)


China is the largest producer, but eats a lot of apples. Russia imports more than anyone.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:17 PM

15. such a waste

 

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 05:29 PM

16. People starve while rich Americans leave $100 million worth in apples to rot in the fields

 

Hurray for capitalism. Leave the food to rot in the fields to keep the price for apples inflated.

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Response to Taitertots (Reply #16)

Fri May 29, 2015, 07:21 PM

19. No kidding.

You'd think the excess apples could be sent to homeless shelters and food banks in the region.
But god forbid, that would be socialism. Or something.

I gave a homeless man an apple the other day. He was so happy.

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Response to a la izquierda (Reply #19)

Fri May 29, 2015, 07:35 PM

22. The apples being dumped

Are not fit to eat. The crop was so large and when the dock workers went on strike, the apples that were supposed to be going to other countries were unable to be shipped. True, some of them may have been salvaged earlier, but after so long in storage they don't hold up well, and now with the new crops coming on, they needed to get rid of the worst ones. Those who had apples on the early market weren't hurt so bad, but those who put a lot of apples in storage last year so they could "hopeful" get more money this spring, lost money instead. When we have record crops, the price is down during harvest, but can go up come the next spring.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Fri May 29, 2015, 08:08 PM

24. There is some naïveté in some of the posts on this thread.

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