In recent years, perhaps everyone has felt that apples are becoming less and less than they used to be, and apple growers everywhere are complaining about the unusual weather that has affected the apple harvest. This, according to food security experts, may be the result of increasingly severe climate change.
In March 2012, the U.S. experienced a sudden cooling after two weeks of 29-degree heat, causing fruit farmers to lose almost 70 percent of their apples; in 2016, nearly all of the apples in southern Michigan were smashed by hail; and in 2019, all apples in Pennsylvania suffered a sudden burst of heat.
“In the case of apples, apple cultivation requires a low temperature period, but the current low temperature period is getting shorter and shorter, so apple production is decreasing,” said Tim Benton, lead author of the UN IPCC’s Climate Change Report and director of the Chatham Energy And Environmental Resources Research Office and a professor at the University of Leeds who focuses on food security. Because the flowering early, the pollinator slot of the apple tree also changes due to climate change, like bees, and so on, the quality of the apple will also decline, the sweetness and acidity will change. “
A previous study in Japan suggested that warmer climates would lead to lower apple acidity, increased sweetness, and made apples less crunchy.
Experts point out that the warming of the apple flowers before they mature to flower, buds exposed to frost and hail and other extreme weather, resulting in the death of some apple trees. At the same time, extreme heat exposure can also cause the surface of apple smudges, causing water heart disease and premature maturation.