English Apples & Pears predicts big differences between 2009 and 2010 crops

Forecasts for 2010's English apples and pears season show that it could be different from last year with some varieties cropping far more fruit and others far less than in 2009.

Estimates collated by English Apples & Pears (EAP) during the middle of June showed that this season is expected to be two weeks behind last year because of cold weather in the first half of the year.

The weather is also expected to make Cox, Braeburn, Egremont Russet and Bramley crops 10 per cent smaller than last year while Worcester, early Windsor, Gala, Spartan and other dessert types such as Jazz and Kanzi are expected to be up by at least 10-15 per cent due to growers' increased investment in these varieties.

EAP chief executive Adrian Barlow said: "We are a long way from harvest so quite a lot of things could change but at the moment it looks as though Cox will be 15 per cent down. But it's not something I am very concerned about because I think it will bring the Cox demand and supply into balance and hopefully reduce the need for a considerable amount of promotional activity we have seen on Cox over the past few years, which has eaten into growers' returns."

He added: "I am slightly concerned that Bramley is expected to be down 10 per cent because so far this year we have seen Bramley sales to supermarkets increase by 2.5 per cent." The pear crop is expected to be a similar size to last year's crop.


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