Michigan Apple Producers Approve Continuation Referendum

Agency: Agriculture and Rural Development

For immediate release: May 8, 2018

Media contact: Jennifer Holton, MDARD, 517-284-5724
Program contact: Diane Smith, MI Apple Committee, 800-456-2753

LANSING – Michigan’s apple producers have approved a referendum to continue the Michigan Apple Advertising and Promotion Program.

Established in July 1968, the Michigan Apple Advertising and Promotion Program was developed to enhance the economic position of Michigan apple producers through advertising, promotion and publicity programs; to conduct market development and research; and to obtain and disseminate other apple industry information important to producers.

The program is a public body independent of the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development. It is comprised of seven apple producers appointed by the Governor. The MDARD Director and a person appointed by the Dean of the Michigan State University College of Agriculture and Natural Resources are non-voting ex-officio members. The board is responsible for the implementation of the program.

The program will continue for an additional five years beginning September 1, 2018 and ending August 31, 2023. The current assessment rates are $0.52 per hundredweight of fresh apples, $0.28 for apples sold for processing, and $0.11 for apples sold for juice.  Included are a $.04 per hundredweight for research and up to $.03 per hundredweight for promotion of U.S. apples with the United States Apple Association.

A total of 113 ballots were cast in the referendum. Of those, 85 producers voted yes (75 percent), representing 15,772,156 bushels (87 percent of the production represented) and 28 producers voted no (25 percent) representing 2,303,286 pounds (13 percent of the production represented).

For renewal of the program and its activities, more than 50 percent of the voting producers, representing more than 50 percent of the production of those voting, must have approved it.

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