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Mid-May frost damages locally-grown fruit, consumers may see higher prices

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WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – There’s bad news for area consumers who enjoy locally-grown fruit.

The president of the Wheeling Farmers Market says the Ohio Valley got a frost on May 18, which hit at a critical time in the development of fruit trees and vines.

Bill Bertram says at his farm, the temperature dipped to 26 degrees, ruining his apple crop, half his grapes and a lot of his blueberries.

And talking to other growers in the area, losses vary from a complete loss to probably 50 percent. So, what that means to the consumer is there will be less fruit available at the market and obviously, that means a higher price this year because they just don’t have the product.

Bill Bertram, President – Wheeling Farmers Market

Bertram said 2020 will be a tough year for growers, adding that there will be locally-grown fruit, but it won’t be the quantity customers have seen in the past.

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