New York apples are going big this fall

From The Packer | 13 July 2023

Overview of apples from New York in the U.S. market, complemented by charts from Agronometrics. Original published on July 11, 2023. 

As the leaves turn, apple-picking families flood the orchards and the state becomes ideal for autumn postcards, the New York Apple Association will have its own marketing plan for retailers well underway.

This fall, it will be all about “The Big Flavor,” the association said. Association President and CEO Cynthia Haskins said she expects almost 28 million bushels in production for the upcoming fall harvest.

“We are experiencing warm summer days that are perfect for bringing out the flavor of apples from New York,” she said.

With flavor as the primary driver for category success, the association will use several strategies to build consumer awareness, starting with informing shoppers on social media about different New York apple varieties and their flavor profiles.


Apple harvest begins in the Hudson Valley and immediate surrounding areas in mid-August, followed by central and western New York about a week or two later. Lastly comes northeast New York.

apple volumes by history 4

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Here’s the lowdown on when to expect each variety:

– Early season varieties start in August with ginger gold and paula red, followed by jonamac and Zestar.

– Other varieties, such as mcintosh, gala, Honeycrisp, cortland, macoun, jonagold, empire, New York-grown SweeTango, SnapDragon and New York-grown EverCrisp, are typically ready in early September through October, depending on the geographical location.

– Other varieties, such as red delicious, Crispin, golden delicious, fuji, Cameo, rome and braeburn, follow soon afterward.

The association’s apple growers are continuously searching for what’s next in providing tasty and healthy apples. Newer varieties include SnapDragon, RubyFrost, SweeTango, EverCrisp and WildTwist. Each has a distinct flavor profile and texture.


Shoppers will always reach for their favorite classic apples, yet are often willing to select a new variety that quickly becomes another favorite, the association said. The flavor is what brings them back to the store to purchase again.

During the campaign, the association will introduce reimagined apple pairings, bringing the familiarity of the classics together with something unexpected.

“It’s about uncovering bold and unconventional pairings for an unforgettable noshing experience,” Haskins said.

The association created 19 new appetizers that marry classic apple varieties with bold pairings. There will be a new series of short videos and images telling the story of an apple’s journey. New York apple orchards are family-owned, and consumers want to know where their food comes from and how it is produced.


“From how apple plantings grow throughout the season and harvest, we want to pass along stories demonstrating the dedication and passion our growers have for driving sustainability and growing some of the best-tasting apples in the world,” Haskins said. “We invite our retail partners to drive a more sustainable future and reduce freight costs at the same time by sourcing closer to the orchards.”

New York growers are close to their packinghouses and densely packed cities, which reduces fuel costs and emissions in every load, she said.

The association team is lining up fall promotional activities with retailers, creating a marketing strategy that includes content for retail partners’ websites, newsletters, blogs, in-store signage and eye-catching packaging that stands out in the produce department. The packaging includes convenient, high-graphic poly totes, poly bags and pouches designed to encourage grab-and-go purchases.

Geo-targeting partnerships will continue to play a substantial role as retailers roll out their “Big on Flavor” campaigns.

The News in Charts is a collection of stories from the industry complemented by charts from Agronometrics to help better tell their story.

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