SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - A record crop of apples, coupled with the West Coast port slowdown earlier this year, is taking a toll on Washington apple growers.
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A record crop of apples, coupled with the West Coast port slowdown earlier this year, is taking a toll on Washington apple growers.
Nearly $100 million worth of apples that cannot be sold have been dumped into fields across central Washington, the nation's most productive apple region. The apples are being left to rot and compost in the hot sun, an unusual occurrence for an industry that has found ways to market ever-growing crops.
Todd Fryhover is president of the Washington Apple Commission in Wenatchee.
He estimates that apple exporters lost at least three weeks of their season because of labor problems at West Coast ports. Along with a record supply of apples, that created surpluses that could not be shipped profitably to markets or processors.