The 84th National Fruit Show will be held on Wednesday 25th October and Thursday 26th October this year and will take place at the Kent Event Centre, Detling Maidstone. In response to the impact of adverse weather on fruits this season, Chairman of Judges, Brian Tompsett, has relaxed the rules on fruit sizes for this year, allowing larger than normal fruit to be entered in most classes.
The changes can all be found on the online entry specifications on the compete page. Growers can complete the new online entry form or download the schedule for the printed version.
Sarah Calcutt, The Marden Fruit Show Society Chairman, said “Blossom was hit in most growing regions this year by several nights of frost, the damage was patchy but coupled with very low average temperatures in the following days has meant that a full fruit set was not been achieved in certain regions, this means that fruit is larger on many farms. Sadly there is also evidence of frost damage on the skin of many apples too. Marketing desks have been working hard with their retail partners to ensure that as much fruit as possible makes it to a retailer shelf this year”.
The good news for consumers and for the ‘Tastiest Apple’ competition, is that the the flavour profile this year is really good. The recent warm weather has made a difference and great flavour has been predicted across all varieties. Cox in particular is looking good for this season with an excellent finish. Gala and Braeburn, the UK’s top selling varieties, will prove to be excellent quality this year and the National Fruit Show are hoping that there will be a good number of the new varieties entered into Class 12 ‘Any Other Variety Dessert Apple’.
Sarah Calcutt, Chairman, explained, “There are some very exciting new apples around and the National Fruit Show is the first time that much of the industry will get to see them. I hope that a lot of the Club apples will enter this season to show how strong they are; there is a good crop across many of the more commercial new varieties, and this could be reflected in the display”.