Pecan Crops

By: Deborah Tuff
By: Deborah Tuff

It's the time of year where you break out the pecans just in time for that perfect pie, but with this summer's drought, are there enough pecans to make those holiday desserts?

Load after load, pecan growers bring bags weighed down with pecans to see what kind of profit they'll get at the Shute Pecan Company.

Jason Perkins drove all the way from Edison, Georgia to find out.

“It's looking pretty good. We had to have some people help us,” said Perkins.

However, Houston County resident Bobby Capps brought about 500 pounds of the crop and says a repeated lack of rain has caused his pecan groves not to produce well.

“Last two or three years they haven't been good,” said Capp.

Some growers were concerned most groves would be like Bobby's, because the summer's dry heat, which produced a drought, nearly wiped out the cotton and peanut crop.

But to many, surprise it didn't.

"It's better than we've seen in 15 years. The entire southeast crop has produced good yields and good quality and we're thankful for that,” said Jean Shute, Shute Pecan Co. owner.

Jean is especially thankful because this is typically an 'off year' for pecans, meaning pecan production is slower this year and picks up full speed ahead next season.

Pecans’ purposes are becoming more widespread. Doctors are suggesting staying a little healthier take a handful of raw pecans and eating them daily.

Some say they've lost up to 40 pounds. Others say their cholesterol has dropped, and because of this it seems pecan retail sales are on the rise.

"People have been coming in and stocking up and freezing pecans," said Sandi Shute of the Shute Pecan Company.

The off year has produced a lower quantity of the crop however the stable quality is having pecans sale at about one dollar a pound.

Last season there was a crop shortage because pecan groves were damaged by Hurricane Ivan.


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