The Fourth of July was anything but a holiday for the Northwest cherry industry, which is in the midst of one of its busiest seasons on record.
Over the 10 days to 7 July, the sector maintained an incredible average shipment rate of 546,000 cartons (9.1kg) per day. According to a release from industry body Norwest Cherry Growers, the per day average was a record high for this portion of the crop.
As of 30 June, the Northwest had delivered 7.8m cartons of fresh cherries to markets worldwide. The performance was down on the 12.3m cartons supplied up to the same point in 2016, however, the general consensus among the industry is that this year’s crop is running more than a week later than last year.
The 2017 campaign remains on track to be the largest in Northwest history, with the latest forecast putting production volume at around 245,000 tonnes.
Pickers are currently tending to the last of the Bing crop, with the size, sugar levels, and firmness of cherries likely to increase as the season moves deeper into July.