It will be hard to find Georgia peaches this summer
MUSELLA, Ga. - It’s going to be hard to find Georgia peaches this summer – and South Carolina, too.
Many farmers report their crops were a total loss. Others are figuring out ways to sell their remaining crops. Many are choosing to limit where they sell them.
Georgia is the third-largest peach producer in the U.S., trailing California and South Carolina. According to the University of Georgia, the state produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches every year.
Pam Knox, soil specialist at The University of Georgia, said you can expect that will be much lower this year. She estimates that 85 to 95% of the peach crop was decimated during a freeze in mid-March.
There’s a similar situation across the Savannah River in South Carolina.
Titan Farms in Trenton is the largest peach farm on the East Coast, but March freezes cost Titan about 70% of its crop.
“I think in many cases, 95% or more of the orchards were lost in Georgia,” Knox said.
Farms like Dickey Farms in Musella are choosing to keep selling what is left of their crop. Dickey Farms will sell the remaining peaches at their storefront and to a few farmer’s markets in the area. Lee Dickey said there will not be shipping to grocery store chains like they traditionally would.
“In a normal year we might pick 10,000 bins of peaches, now we might pick 300 or 400 bins,” said Dickey.
He said that they have enough to make their infamous peach ice cream. He still hopes the community will come out and support the farm.
“People may not be buying peaches this year, but we got some other good things. It’s been a great strawberry season, normally they don’t last until now so there’s a little bit of a silver lining,” said Dickey.
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