Everything is not just peachy this summer in Georgia. Due to freak weather patterns in 2016 and 2017, about 80 percent of the peach crop has been wiped out, along with a significant portion of blueberry crops. Farmers are trying to salvage what they can, but the South will be hit with a severe shortage this year that will cost producers about $300 million overall. This will affect such Georgia summer staples as peach pie and peach iced tea.
“The closest comparison we have right now is, looking back at the historical records has to go back all the way to the 1930s,” research horticulturist Tom Beckman, told The Daily Mail.
The historically poor crop is due to an unusually warm weather, as well as a three-day deep-freeze in March that wreaked havoc on delicate fruit trees.
The peach shortage will deliver an economic blow to a state that relies on peaches as a major export.
“If you go by what the old-timers say, we should have had nothing,” Will McGehee, the sales and marketing manager of Pearson Farm, which grows peaches and pecans in Fort Valley, Georgia, told The New York Times. “Let’s just say we’re looking forward to pecan season.”
If you’re fortunate enough to get your hands on Georgia peaches in spite of the shortage, consider making one of these 9 Sweet and Healthy Peach Desserts.