Harvest catastrophe for apple growers
ENGLISH apple growers said they faced the worst harvest in more than 60 years. They warned that many small producers could go bust.
Cox and Bramley output is expected to be half that of a normal year because of April and Mays frosts. Midsummer hailstones knocked fruit off the trees.
This years crop of English apples is not expected to exceed 150,000 tonnes. Cox and Bramley are estimated to be down 48% and 51%. Yields of other varieties such as Gala, Spartan, Worcester and Discovery have also halved. The price of Cox is expected to rise to 69p/1b, 40% higher than last year.
The full extent of the damage will become clearer in the next fortnight once the apples are taken off the trees.