The American pecan industry took a big hit last year in the form natural disasters and of course the increased tariffs due to the ongoing US/China trade war. Many growers know first hand the effects of the trade war resulting in dramatically reduced pecan prices on the farm.
What many pecan growers across the region may not have known about is the overall decrease in assessments paid in to the American Pecan Council. With Georgia losing an estimated 50 million plus pounds of pecans during the hurricane, and Texas losing a significant amount of pecans due to excessive rains and localized flooding, the American pecan industry has also lost a significant amount assessments this crop season.
It will take most of the year to know exactly how much was lost in the overall pecan market, however using the early estimates of 50 million pounds, Georgia losses alone could account for a 1.5 million dollar budget reduction. Then looking at the losses in Texas as well as a reduced Oklahoma pecan crop, the number gets even larger. The APC could be looking at a 1.7 to as high as a 2 million dollar reduction in budget for the coming year.
The APC of course is aware of this reduction and is currently making plans and budget cuts in order to keep programs running throughout the year. Since the APC’s inception, the last 2 crop years have yielded an average of 317 million pounds of pecans with assessments, this crop year could prove to be significantly smaller.