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Pear Bureau Northwest Releases Fresh Pear Crop Estimates for 2010-2011 Season

Visit LazytownThe forthcoming pear harvest’s yield is estimated to be in line with five-year average

 

NORTHWEST FRESH PEAR CROP ESTIMATES RELEASED FOR 2010 – 2011 SEASON

The forthcoming pear harvest’s yield is estimated to be in line with five-year average

PORTLAND, Ore. (June 18, 2010) – As spring’s pear blossoms transform into the new crop of fresh Northwest pears, Pear Bureau Northwest estimates that Washington and Oregon’s 2010 pear harvest will be on par with the five-year average. With a projected total of approximately 18.5 million standard box equivalents of pears, the 2010 crop is estimated to be approximately 1% larger than the five-year average, and 8% smaller than last year’s record-breaking crop.  The projected decrease in crop size compared to last year is due in part to unseasonably cold and wet weather conditions throughout the Pacific Northwest during the spring, as well as the trees taking a needed rest after record production last year.  Last year’s record-breaking yield was the result of ideal weather conditions throughout the spring and summer.

Harvest begins in mid-August with Summer/Fall varieties including the Bartlett, the Red Bartlett, and other red pear varieties like the Starkrimson.  Winter pear varieties such as the Anjou, Bosc, Comice, Concorde, Forelle, and Seckel will be picked from late August through early October.  The quality of the fruit looks excellent, with no significant issues affecting the crop to date.

Green Anjou pears remain the most abundantly grown variety in the Pacific Northwest.  After last year’s record crop, Green Anjou yield for 2010 is expected to decrease by 10% when compared to 2009, but the crop size should still be 1% larger than the five-year average. Certain pear varieties are experiencing considerable growth when compared to the five-year average.  The Comice pear crop is expected to increase by 16%; the Red Anjou crop will grow by 15%; and the Bartlett crop is experiencing growth of about 6% vs. the five year average.  The top three varieties in terms of production remain the same as in previous years; Green Anjou pears are anticipated to make up 54% of the 2010 crop, and Bartlett and Bosc pears are expected to yield 21% and 14% respectively.

Organic pear production shows a slight increase as the estimate points to 5% growth over last year for Summer/Fall varieties while Winter pear varieties are showing a 1% decrease when compared to last year, for an overall crop size of almost 800,000 standard boxes of organically grown pears being estimated for the 2010-2011 season.  With annual increases in organic pear production, this season is projected to be the largest organic pear crop to date.

Kevin Moffitt, president and CEO of Pear Bureau Northwest, is confident that the Pear Bureau’s marketing programs will continue to be effective in helping to move the crop.  “Pears continue to be a popular fruit with consumers the world over. To capitalize and expand on their popularity we have many progressive and innovative programs in place to grab the attention of the consumer as well as retailers and foodservice operators,” said Moffitt.

Key areas in this season’s domestic marketing program include a strong push for early crop movement and utilizing key marketing periods to increase demand and boost sales.  The Pear Bureau is also using its in-house data analysis system to custom tailor promotional opportunities for retailers nationwide, and Pear Bureau presence at consumer and trade events all over the country will support ongoing promotions.  Consumer outreach will continue with ongoing print advertising and a soon-to-be-announced high-profile collaboration that will engage consumers throughout the fall and winter.

An integrated communications program supports and enhances ongoing programs with consumer and trade media outreach, recipe development for both consumers and foodservice, and the continued development of the online presence for USA Pears on www.usapears.org and social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.  In addition, “Pear Panache,” the Pear Bureau’s award-winning program directed to foodie consumers, continues into its fifth year of success with this season’s activities beginning early in the season. 

The Pear Bureau will engage in export promotions in 39 countries worldwide, with eighteen international marketing representatives coordinating promotions for USA Pears with activities targeted for each country’s market.  With the current season’s success in export markets due to economic recovery in many countries and the U.S. dollar remaining in positive trading range, the Pear Bureau will carry this momentum into the forthcoming season.  The top export markets for USA Pears will remain Mexico, Canada, Brazil, Russia, the UAE, Colombia, and Hong Kong, with India as a strong growth market for the industry.  Special promotions planned include the “US Fresh Fruit Showcase,” which successfully launched in India and Indonesia last season and will now be adopted for the Hong Kong and Taiwan markets.  This activity will include in-store promotions with key retailers in each of the targeted countries and PR events for consumers, as well as wet market promotions in Hong Kong.

About Pear Bureau Northwest
Pear Bureau Northwest is a non-profit marketing organization established in 1931 to promote the fresh USA Pears grown in Washington and Oregon, home to 84% of the US fresh pear crop.  The Bureau represents 1,600 growers and develops national and international markets for Northwest pear distribution.  For more information, visit www.usapears.org.

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Media Contact: Cristie Mather, Director of Communications, Pear Bureau Northwest
(503) 652-9720; cmather@usapears.com

Pear Bureau Northwest prohibits discrimination in all of its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, political beliefs, or disability.  Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact the Pear Bureau at (503) 652-9720.