Northwest Cherry Growers Announces Seasonal Availability in Recent Crop Update; B.J. Thurlby Comments
YAKIMA, WA - The late-running cherry season continues to provide some sweet opportunities for retailers. Northwest Cherry Growers (NWCG) has shared the latest crop details as the region enters the last phase of the 2022 season—currently forecasted to stretch into September.
“What began as a late cherry harvest resulted in having Northwest sweet cherries available to enjoy further into the summer than usual,” B.J. Thurlby, President of the Northwest Cherry Growers, said. “We hope cherry lovers will take advantage of the late harvest to stock up. By following some simple preservation tips, they can enjoy sweet cherries and their health benefits—ranging from heart disease and diabetes prevention to reducing gout attacks—all the way until next season.”
The late-running availability is a special boon amid this year’s back-to-school season, with its easy snacking and 2022 yielding great quality and flavor. As of the latest report, the collective industry has shipped just over 12.7 million boxes of noticeably large, sweet fruit.
Northwest weather appears to have stabilized, according to the recent release, looking encouraging for several more weeks of harvest in higher elevation and latitude orchards, and the 2022 crop have come in slightly-above the Round 4 crop curve.
August was markedly fruitful, yet 2022 will go down as one of the Northwest's smaller crops since the turn of the century, NWCG reported, projecting that slow and steady will be the norm for the remainder of the harvest.
These last few weeks of harvest provide opportunities to help make fresh connections at the shelf as nearly 2/3 of shoppers report the health benefits of cherries impacted or would impact their decision to purchase them in every survey we've conducted. Even Olympic Cross Country Skier Gold Medalist and World Cup Champion Jessie Diggins recently gave a shout out to the popular treefruit, a social media spotlight NWCG was happy to reshare.
Northwest-grown cherries are harvested by more than 2,000 growers across Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Utah, and Montana, who together produce almost all of the cherries found in stores from mid-June through early September.