SACRAMENTO - The California Department of Food and Agriculture’s (CDFA) California Agricultural Statistics Service today released crop production forecasts on selected crops for June 2001.
Apricots - Apricot production for 2001 is forecast at 95,000 tons, up approximately 2 percent from the 2000 crop of 93,000 tons. Bearing acreage is estimated at 18,000. Harvests are proceeding normally with early varieties already in progress, while Patterson varieties will begin shortly. No adverse weather conditions have occurred to affect the crop, although there are some concerns about fruit size.
Sweet Cherries - The 2001 California sweet cherry crop, at 60,000 tons, is up 50 percent from the 2000 crop. Bearing acreage is estimated at 20,000 acres. Growers experienced excellent weather conditions during bloom resulting in a heavy set. Despite record heat during May, growers are picking an excellent quality crop with good flavor. Harvest is progressing well with over three-fourths of the crop picked.
Peaches - The 2001 California Freestone peach crop forecast is 390,000 tons, up 1 percent from the May forecast, but down 3 percent from the 2000 crop. Bearing acreage is estimated at 39,000. Harvest is progressing well with Crown Princess and Crimson Lady the primary varieties picked. California’s Clingstone peach crop is forecast to be 525,000 tons, up 5 percent from the May forecast, but down 1 percent from the previous year. Bearing acreage is estimated at 28,800 acres. Crop set looks good in the early varieties, while lighter sets have been reported in the late varieties. Harvest is expected to begin at the end of June.
Bartlett Pears - The initial forecast of the 2001 Bartlett pear crop in California is 240,000 tons, down 16 percent from last year. Bearing acres are estimated to be 14,000 acres. Crop development is proceeding according to schedule. Hail and frost damage were encountered in early spring in areas of Sacramento County. Quality and fruit size are reported to be good.
Prunes - The 2001 California prune crop is estimated at 155,000 dried tons, down 29 percent from last year. Bearing acreage is estimated to be 86,000 acres. The crop experienced favorable weather conditions during bloom. However, these favorable conditions did not result in a heavy set statewide, as several growers reported very little fruit on their trees. The crop was further reduced by freezing temperatures and hail during April, which damaged the fruit in various areas of California.
Wheat - Winter Wheat production for 2001 in California is forecast at 28.5 million bushels, unchanged from the May forecast, but up 16 percent from 2000. The yield forecast is 75.0 bushels per acre from 380,000 harvested acres. Durum wheat production in California is forecast at 8.10 million bushels, unchanged from the May forecast, but 16 percent below last year. The yield forecast is 100 bushels per acre from 81,000 harvested acres. Northern California’s dry weather conditions, coupled with record-high temperatures throughout the State during May, increased demand for winter wheat irrigation while warmer weather was pushing the wheat crop to mature rapidly. Most of the crop has been reported to be in good to excellent condition. Harvest began in the Imperial Valley in early May, while the San Joaquin Valley harvest was underway by June 1. Harvest of winter wheat in the Sacramento Valley is expected to begin by midJuly. No major pests or diseases were reported.
The California Agricultural Statistics Service operates under a cooperative agreement between CDFA and USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. This joint service prepares and distributes statistics on California agriculture. The next production report will be issued on July 11, 2001.
California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814