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September 17, 2012

Farmers Anticipate a Bumper Pumpkin Crop

For more information on Newsline, contact: Cyndie Sirekis, Director, Internal Communications, American Farm Bureau Federation, cyndies@fb.org.

 
Many U.S. pumpkin farmers are anticipating a bumper crop of the orange orbs this fall. AFBF’s Cyndie Sirekis reports.
Sirekis:Many farmers are anticipating a bumper crop of pumpkins this year. Veronica Nigh, an economist with the American Farm Bureau Federation, explain why.
Nigh:The good news to report is we’re going to have a fairly good pumpkin crop this year. And a lot of folks are are reporting that it’s some of the better quality crop that they’ve had in years. Increased production and good quality pumpkins has come mainly from those farmers who are able to utilize irrigation.
Sirekis:The devastating drought that hurt many crops was gentler on pumpkins.
Nigh:Pumpkins are actually one of the few crops that do pretty well in drought conditions. The rind of a pumpkin is incredibly susceptible to diseases that come from too much water. The lack of precipitation hasn’t been too bad for the pumpkin crop. And by using irrigation, most farmers are able to control when and how much water gets put on the crop and so that’s led to overall good quality.
Sirekis:An increase in the total number of acres planted to pumpkins this spring is paying off as harvest nears.
Nigh:Overall in the U.S., ornamental and processing pumpkins combined average about 48,000 acres . Last year the U.S. planted over 51,000.
Sirekis:Cyndie Sirekis, Washington.
Sirekis:We have two extra actualities with AFBF’s Veronica Nigh. In the first extra actuality she explains that although a bumper pumpkin crop is expected overall, there may be problems with supply in some areas. The cut runs 18 seconds, in 3-2-1.
Nigh:In areas that were that were hit hard by the drought, and don’t use irrigation as often or as much you could experience some local shortages of pumpkins. Primarily for the consumer, they won’t feel that as much except with some increased marginally increased prices. Farmers who have experienced drought in some smaller crops probably will see significantly less out-of-state sales.
Sirekis:In the second extra actuality Nigh talks about where pumpkins are grown. The cut runs 9 seconds, in 3-2-1.
Nigh:Illinois is the largest producer of processing pumpkins. The top producing ornamental states are California, Michigan, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Sirekis:Newsline is updated Mondays and Thursdays by 5pm Eastern time. Thank you for listening.

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