The English Apple Man logo

The English Apple Man


28th Apr 2023 - Apple blossom is slow to open.

It's been slow, but the apple blossom is beginning to move with the likes of Braeburn and Red Windsor in bloom.


Below: Red Windsor tree in bloom today in English Apple Man's Garden and Blossom with pollen sacs open on 15 April 2022!


My garden apple varieties, are at least 14 days later than in 2022. The only tree in bloom is the Red Windsor and many of the buds are still in the pink bud stage. Compare that with the Red Windsor blossom on April 15th 2022 when the blossom is fully open and the pollens sacs open and pollen released!



Conference Pears are at the blossom stage, while Cox and Bramley apples at no more than Green Cluster/Early Pink Bud.



Apple blossom time?


Below: left to right. Discovery, Red Devil and James Grieve at various stages of pink bud today in my garden















British Apples and Pears Limited calls for fairer returns.


For the first time, an independent analysis has exposed the real cost of production crisis facing UK apple growers.


The analysis, conducted by farm business consultants Andersons, reveals that it now costs £1.26 (median cost) to produce a kilo of British apples.


"I can't think of a single apple grower that is making money." Said British Apples & Pears Limited (BAPL) executive chair, Ali Capper. "The costs of labour, storage, haulage, tree planting and orchard maintenance have all increased. What hasn't increased is the return to growers.


"This analysis confirms what, anecdotally, growers have been saying for months. UK apple growing just isn't profitable at the moment. In fact, for most it's loss making. When growers cannot afford to invest in new apple trees and are grubbing orchards, the consequences are serious, not just for growers but also for the rural landscape and economy. We face biodiversity loss, lower returns to the treasury and poorer outcomes for consumers.


"No one wants to import more apples. It makes no sense from a carbon or water footprint perspective, and it diminishes UK food security. We need to see specific government support to address energy costs and labour shortages, and we urgently need fairer returns for growers from UK supermarkets to ensure the future of the British apple industry."


BAPL points to a disconnect between the prices consumers are paying for apples and the return to growers. According to ONS data, the lowest consumer price of apples increased 17% between September 2021 and September 2022.


However, UK apple growers only reported a 0.8% increase in what supermarkets pay them for their fruit.


Despite significant cost of production increases, British apples remain highly affordable. With a single British apple costing around 34p to UK shoppers, they are less than half the price of a chocolate bar and offer huge nutritional benefits.




A fascinating profile of how much individual Supermarkets support British apples is demonstrated by the survey carried out by BAPL. By monitoring the amount of British apples sold by each Supermarket chain, and comparing it to the groceries sold by each Suoermarker. we can see who is the most supportive retailer.




For the full picture click on: BAPL Supermarket Sales
















The ongoing dilemma facing our Apple growers has at least created much debate on our local TV networks and occasional Nationwide news.


Tonight on BBC South the dramatic increase in the acreage of UK Vineyards, and particularly in Kent & Sussex was a main feature.


Below: left. Overview of a grubbed apple orchard and right. An English Vineyard



On the subject of Vineyards, Bettina Kurz in on line articles speculating the most valuable vineyards in France posted this beautiful scenic picture on LINKEDIN.


Bettina Kurz - Owner & Managing Director - Viva Business GmbH & Co.KG


Bettina Kurz - Posted this picture of high value vineyards in France.



Click on Map of British Vineyards to understand the scale of British Viticulture expansion.



That is all for this week


Take care


The English Apple Man