The Apple Project
Glynwood’s Apple Project will preserve apple orchards in the Hudson Valley by promoting the production of hard cider and apple spirits. The project will stimulate ‘apple entrepreneurship’ by encouraging the diversification of apple varieties, giving growers new resources for improved skills, and supporting a market for these products.
The Hudson Valley is beloved for its scenic landscapes, including its working lands and splendid orchards. But its apple producers have been facing tough conditions as globalized competition narrows profit margins, while costs of production rise and development pressures endanger farmland. From 2002 to 2007 (the most recent Agricultural Census years), acreage in apples declined by 14% in the Hudson Valley, while the number of apple orchards went down by 25%. Considering that fruit trees take years to become established, these losses are significant.
And yet, vibrant urban markets and the local food movement are creating new opportunities for regional farms. A rapidly growing niche market for hard cider and apple spirits offers regional apple orchards the possibility for revival.
Glynwood’s Apple Project will respond to this opportunity through a suite of efforts:
- The Apple Exchange, a collaboration with journalist Colette Rossant, will enhance growers’ skills through a cultural/educational exchange with producers from Le Perche, France.
- The Hudson Valley Cider Route will promote regional cider producers to the general public.
- Cider Week will cultivate appreciation for hard cider.
By encouraging the entrepreneurial creation of distinctive value-added products, Glynwood seeks to increase recognition for the Hudson Valley landscapes that produce world-class food and drink. Through initiatives like The Apple Project, Glynwood is fostering a vibrant farm and food culture, shaping the region as a place where farming persists and orchards thrive, while building public appreciation for the Hudson Valley’s agricultural legacy.