Australian cherry growers are expected to pick 18,000 tonnes of fruit this season – the biggest crop ever.
The apple, pear and stone fruit industries have had to overcome extreme weather patterns, water shortages, difficult trading conditions and unfavourable exchange rates in the last five years, but now things are looking up.
NSW Cherry Growers Association president Tom Eastlake told the ABC, good weather and perfect pollination are to thank for a bumper harvest.
“We had a very good winter, some good chill hours which is what we need to achieve a good fruit set,” he said.
“It will be a very good year to be a consumer of cherries.”
With industry revenue projected to post annualised growth of 2.4% over the five years through 2014-15, to reach $1.09 billion, according to IBISWorld.
But the bigger crop and better conditions, won’t drop the premium Christmas fruit’s price.
Eastlake said an increased demand from East Asian countries could mean that over half of this year’s harvest will leave Australian shores.
The annual Sydney Cherry Auction this year raised $65,000 for the sale of the seasons first box of cherries.
The funds went to Save our Sons and the Sydney Markets Foundation.
Read more here.
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