This year’s Bramley apple harvest has been blighted by cold and wet weather, cutting yields by as much as half
Apples are also much smaller overall, prompting supermarkets to relax size parameters.
The low yield will particularly affect pie producers, and there is a higher risk of the apples rotting in-store.
Adrian Barlow, chief executive of English Apples and Pears, said, “We are probably going to see a few years when the crop will be on the tight side. Supply has outstripped demand and that has caused the market to be over-supplied. We should see some seasons where it’s a bit more balanced.
“The Irish supply needs to shrink. They have grown too much for their market – the tonnage is not far behind England’s and they haven’t had the sales for that,” he added.
The weather particularly afftected growers in Northern Ireland, leaving some orchards so badly damaged they may have to be cut down.