As you sit down to enjoy your pecan pie this Thanksgiving, don’t forget about Georgia’s pecan growers.
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When Tropical Storm Irma hit a couple months ago, it damaged about 30 percent of the state’s pecan crop.
Growers need to replace uprooted trees, but that’s easier said than done because the pecan industry is growing.
“There’s a lot of interest in it and a lot of new orchards being planted,” said Jeb Barrow, president of the Georgia Pecan Growers Association. He’s also been a pecan grower for almost 50 years.
“And all of these new orchards have pretty much sucked all the nursery trees out of the system for a couple years to come.”
The industry is growing because there’s more demand for pecans these days, a lot of it from China.
“Well over half of the Georgia crop is shipped overseas to China,” Barrow said.
As for this year’s crop, Barrow expects it to be about 10 million pounds less than last year. But he said people won’t see price gouges at the stores.