Posted: Jul 6, 2012 11:29 PM by Robin O'Day - KPAX News
Updated: Jul 9, 2012 9:05 AM
CORVALLIS- Thanks to a late spring frost, some orchards in the Bitterroot Valley lost their entire crop, but will that mean higher prices for apples at the grocery store this fall?
"We're pricing this stuff at about where we think it's fair and equitable. So we're not going to jab the customer and raise it a lot," says Charles Swanson of Swanson's Mountain View Orchards.
Pattee Creek Market is a huge account for Swanson's and they say even though there are fewer apples this season, they'll do their best to keep prices down.
"I don't really see an increase, if he's going to be about like it was last year, that's where we're going to be too," Pattee Creek Market Produce Manager Stan Leisle said.
With fewer apples to go around, both farmer and retailer are determined to keep prices reasonable, which is a key component in the "know your farmer" mentality.
"Keep the money local, keep the local farmers in business and buy that local product. And that's just good for the economy locally, and it breeds good will for the community. And yeah, our customers get it, they understand that," says Leisle.
It might be cheaper to pick up a Red Delicious apple with a Washington label, but there's something special about a fruit less traveled.
"To just pick up a piece of fruit and eat it and know that nobody else has touched it," says Swanson.
He says his apples should be ready for harvest by late September.