Apple crop down sharply in wake of 2012 drought

Last year’s hot, dry weather took a toll on the state’s apple crop. According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Wisconsin’s total apple production for 2012 decreased 54%, the number of bearing acres fell by 600, and yields decreased more than three tons per acre. Nationally, apple production fell 4%. Low production forced a 29% price rise from 2011, to 62.6 cents per pound.

Meanwhile, irrigation systems kept the state’s cranberry harvest at record levels. Wisconsin produced 483 million pounds of cranberries from 19,700 acres in 2012, an increase of 9%.

The state’s tart cherry crop dropped 75% and yields decreased 73%, which was no surprise to Door County growers. Nationally, U.S. production dropped 63%.