Cranberry production could break record - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Cranberry production could break record

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WISCONSIN RAPIDS (WAOW) -- The Wisconsin State Cranberry Grower's Association said for nearly two decades, Wisconsin has led the nation in producing cranberries.

"Cranberries from Wisconsin will go all across the world about 25 to 30 percent of the crop gets sold over seas," said Executive Director of the association, Tom Lochner.

And this year could come close to a record with an estimated 4.3 million barrels to be harvested this fall.

Tom Lochner with the State Cranberry Grower's Association said production numbers fell about 10 to 15 percent last year.

"Because of the weather we saw a lot of vine growth, that resulted in a lot of fruit rot, a lot of the fruit was damaged," said Lochner.

But this year has been different. He said the long winter actually helped the fruits

"Because if you come out here in December and you get that first 20 below, growers will flood these beds and cover them entirely with water," Said Lochner.

Lochner adds that ice protects the vines all winter which leads to a better crop.

"Once the crops are brought in, we'll start working on next year. Preparing, maybe do some renovations, new planting, to get them ready for the next growing season," said Lochner.

Cranberry growers are optimistic about their fall harvest, but are also looking ahead to next year.

Online Reporter: Courtney Fasano

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