Dan Wheat/Capital Press
PORTLAND — Pear harvest is underway in all four growing regions of the Pacific Northwest, and Pear Bureau Northwest is forecasting a larger fresh crop than it did in June.
The new estimate is 20.2 million, 44-pound boxes, up from 18.9 million. If the new forecast holds it will be the fourth largest crop in history and the largest organic crop with organics making up 2 million boxes or 10 percent of the crop.
“After last year’s very small crop our growers are pleased to have a full crop of great quality pears to meet growing consumer demand,” said Kevin Moffitt, the Pear Bureau president in Portland.
“Retailers have a strong opportunity for pear category growth in the produce department this season and we are prepared to provide them with individual category analysis, consumer insights and effective promotions to drive pear sales,” Moffitt said.
Picking will continue through September in the Wenatchee, Yakima, Hood River and Medford districts.
The new estimate is for 9.9 million boxes of Green d’Anjou, 5.3 million boxes of Bartlett, 3.2 million boxes of Bosc, 1 million boxes of Red d’Anjou and other varieties rounding out the balance.
The Pear Bureau’s international promotions focus on Mexico, Central America, India, the Middle East and Asia.
To combat increased competition overseas, the bureau is initiating one- to two-month promotional agreements with key retailers to increase shelf space and improve space and location of USA pears in stores.