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Okanagan apple harvest weeks ahead of schedule

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September 14, 2016 - 2:30 PM

KELOWNA – The president of B.C. Fruit Growers Association says apples are ready weeks earlier than normal in the Okanagan.

“Ten days to two weeks early across the board,” Fred Steele says.

Steele says without the intense heat the Okanagan got last summer, he thinks the apples this year are better quality.

“We didn’t get those 43 degree days thank goodness," he says. “We had some rainy days towards the end of summer and the last three or four nights have been pretty chilly."

Cooler weather helps brighten the skin of the apple and enhance the flavour, according Steele.

It’s too early to call this a bumper crop but some varieties clearly enjoyed the mild summer, he says.

“We got more Macintosh apples than we ever got before,” he says. “Maybe the apple fairies put all the blossoms on their backs.”

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