USA UU (Florida): The heat endangers the blueberry crop

Ben Futch, of Futch Family Farms, in Florida (USA), believes that the warm winter of this year has been detrimental to the blueberry season and to the producers of the region. The weather conditions of this winter have been too warm to force the blueberries to go into natural vegetative rest.

“When the blueberry goes into vegetative rest, it wants to reproduce and make more blueberries”explains Futch. As a result, “our harvest has taken a long time to produce and mature”.

Futch says it's the latest season he's ever seen in his ten years as a blueberry grower. “We have just started harvesting at the peak of the season. The normal blueberry season in Florida runs from March through May. Now it is entering May, and we are starting to harvest the good ones”, explains Futch.

With such a late start to the season, Futch explains that traders who would normally buy their harvest have already moved to other states. “I see a lot of fruit that is not going to reach the commercial market. It's because the commercial market has already shifted to Georgia, North Carolina, New Jersey and other states.".

He worries that, now that the blueberries are finally ready, thousands of kilos of blueberries will end up drying and rotting. “The entire state of Florida is in danger. Not just mine. Only my crop amounts to about 23.000 or 27.000 kilos without harvesting. If people don't know they're here, they're going to end up in the trash."says Futch.


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