By JOSEPH SCHAPIRO, Associated PressWASHINGTON (AP) The blueberries that are popular in the United States are often the ones that have been in the U.S. for generations.
Blueberries are the favorite fruit of the South because of their strong, tart flavor, but they are also grown around the world.
But some Americans aren’t so fond of blueberries.
The blueberry industry is in a free fall, and the U to the point that the blueberry growers have no business exporting the fruits, according to the U, the International Blueberry Association and the American Blueberry Council.
The decline is not solely a taste issue, said Amy Fagan, a spokeswoman for the U’s National Blueberry Commission.
The industry is experiencing a decline in demand, due to increased competition and consumers shifting their purchases to produce other fruits and vegetables.
Fagan said the industry is on track to meet its projected 2020 output of 8.4 million metric tons, down from 9.9 million tons in 2015.
The U. S. exported more than 8.7 million metric pounds of blueberry in 2017, down 14 percent from 2016.
The blueberries produced in the West are more expensive to ship, Fagan noted, adding that the market is “shifting and changing rapidly.”
Fagan said that a growing number of U.s. farmers are switching to other fruits or vegetables and are relying on foreign companies to supply the bulk of the fruit and vegetables they grow.
She said the export of blue berries is likely to continue to decline, as consumers shift to produce more locally grown fruits and veggies.
The U. to the extent that the U has no choice but to sell its blueberries is in large part because of increased demand from Asian markets.
But Fagan also said there are a number of factors that are playing a role, including an improving economy and the aging of U consumers, who are more likely to buy imported produce.
Blueberry production is being driven by demand in the Midwest, which has seen a surge in interest in the fruit in recent years.
Foyles, a company that is also a certified organic grower in Minnesota, is a big buyer in that market, Foyls said.
Friesen Farms, a Blueberry supplier in Missouri, is also growing the fruit.
The Blueberry Growers Association, which represents about 100 growers in the state, said it has a strong relationship with the U and has worked with them on the issue for the last five years.
The association has worked to reduce the need for overseas suppliers of blue berry supplies, and has a policy of supporting sustainable agriculture, Fanny Mott, the association’s executive director, said in a statement.
“We believe that the export market for the industry must remain a vibrant industry with a vibrant export market,” she said.
“We are very proud to be a part of this growing movement that is driving U. exports to the world.”
In addition to the industry’s continued decline, many farmers have been forced to take on more risk.
Fanny says that some farmers have started to use more chemicals to control pests and diseases that have hit the crop.
Blueberry growers also are finding that their crops are more susceptible to diseases.
“The main issue we have is that a lot of our customers are in rural areas,” Fanny said.
The United States is the world’s top exporter of blue fruit.
The International Blueberries Association says the U accounts for about one-fifth of global exports.
Blueberries are a staple for many of the country’s farmers.
In many parts of the Midwest and the South, blueberries have become a popular ingredient in many dishes.
Blue berries are also popular as a topping for many foods, including pizza and ice cream.
The USDA reports that the crop is grown on about 8 percent of U of M’s farmland.
Blue berry exports are expected to reach $1.2 billion in 2019, up from $817 million in 2016, according the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Fagan says that if blueberries were to fall out of favor, the industry would have a tough time attracting more new farmers.
The growing demand for produce that is produced in other countries is forcing many U. farms to make the tough choice between growing the crop locally or sourcing the fruit overseas.
Frydtsen, who has been with the Blueberry Commodities and Trade Association for 20 years, says he’s not sure whether the U will continue to export blueberries in the future.
“I’m not sure that the industry will continue, but the fact that we have such a large number of producers in our industry, we have a very large number, I don’t think it will be difficult to continue that,” he said.