where are the cider apples?
Do any of you annual farmers ever get tired of bending over all day and dream of growing food whilst standing? There is a solution- you can grow food (and drink) on trees! The US is currently witnessing a booming growth in hard cider production that shows no chance of slowing anytime soon. The demand for cider apples is at an all time high and few farmers out there are growing them. Outfits like NPR and Modern Farmer have picked up on this apple shortage and produced articles in the past week.
NPR interviewed Steve Wood, co-owner of Farnum Hill Cider, who says: "Few farmers in the U.S. grow the "bittersweet" and "bittersharp" varieties historically favored in Europe, which has a much richer tradition of cider-making than America. As a result, many U.S. craft cider producers are making do with apples meant for eating — like Golden Delicious, Fuji, Pink Lady and Gala. These apples, while sweet and crunchy, make poor cider — dull in flavor and bite, with little structure behind the alcohol, cider makers say. Per pound, [these] inedible cider apple varieties sell for almost 10 times the price of table apples."
Check out the entire article HERE!
(If anyone out there is interested in growing cider apples/heirlooms and doesn't know where to start, there aren't many sources out there to help you. For general inspiration and help in identifying a network of growers (young and old), email the Foggy Ridge Cider orchardist, she'll help you out. [email protected].)