Mighty Red Delicious dethroned
By Marg Land
Move over Red Delicious – there’s a new top apple in town.
The U.S. Apple Association [US Apple] recently announced that after 50-plus years of being the number one produced apple in the United States, the Red Delicious has been surpassed by Gala.
“The rise in production of newer varieties of apples aimed at the fresh consumption market has caused demand for Red Delicious to decline,” said Mark Seetin, director of regulatory and industry affairs with US Apple, during the association’s 2018 outlook conference.
The top five apple varieties in 2018 – based on forecasted production numbers – are Gala, Red Delicious, Granny Smith, Fuji and Honeycrisp. Golden Delicious is expected to drop out of the top five to sixth place in production numbers.
”However, Red Delicious is important in the export market, where it makes up roughly half of our apple exports,” Seetin added.
The top five export markets for U.S. apples include Mexico, India, Canada, Taiwan and Vietnam.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has forecast the 2018 U.S. crop at 272.7 million bushels, making it the fourth largest recorded crop.
At $3.55 billion, farm gate value of the U.S. 2017 crop was up three per cent over 2016 and set a new record.
US Apple’s 2018 Outlook conference is currently underway in Chicago, IL.