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Warm temperatures could have detrimental impact on Michigan apple crop

Ville Nummela

Apple farmers across Michigan say the unseasonably warm fall temperatures could be detrimental to this year’s crop.

Kevin Robson is a Michigan Farm Bureau Horticultural Specialist. He said farmers need to cool the fruit, particularly more sensitive varieties like Honeycrisp, before storing it to keep apples from going bad.

“Unfortunately these 90 degree temps that we have here for the next couple of days is going to require growers to literally go the extra mile to make sure the apples are cooled down to makes sure the quality remains the same and constant for our consumers.”

Robson said farmers will take precautions to protect their crop.

“They utilize things like they’ll have their apples sit outside overnight. What makes it tough right now for these next few days is it’s hot during the day up above 90 but then it doesn’t cool off enough during the night time. We’re literally going to have to wait a few days on those apples before they get put into storage.”

Robson said the warm temperatures could be detrimental.

“So what happens is if you put apples in storage and the heat wasn’t properly taken out there will be CO2 still built up inside the apple. All that does is it makes that apple have more tendency to break down, it’ll bruise easier, it could have some rotting in there.”

Temperatures across the state are expected to become more seasonal by Thursday, with highs in the sixties.