S.C. farmers lost 90 percent of peach crop last week

Cruel Summer


Titan Farms in Ridge Spring, S.C. - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Titan Farms in Ridge Spring, S.C.
There's nothing peachy about it, last week's freeze did a number on South Carolina's peach crop. According to a statement from the South Carolina Department of Agriculture, our state peach farmers "face the worst crop damage they have seen in 10 years."

Due to our wack weather, the unseasonably warm winter meant peach trees were in early bloom. Then wham, last week records lows smacked those blossoms in the face. The South Carolina Peach Council says farmers have lost up to 90 percent of this year's crop.

“Peaches are a signature South Carolina crop, and this weather anomaly has devastated peach farmers,” said Hugh Weathers, SC Commissioner of Agriculture in a SCDA statement. “However, as South Carolina farmers have shown time and again, they are resilient and with the help of allied-industry partners, they will survive this devastating blow.”

Sadly, it's not just a loss for cobblers and jams, the cold snap could hurt the 1,500 people who work in the peach industry statewide. S.C. is the second largest peach growing state in the nation with an annual value of $90 million and a statewide economic impact of $300 million.

According to SCDA, "Farmers are still assessing the damage and do not expect to know the total impact of the freeze for at least three weeks."

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