TULELAKE — Horseradish harvesting in the Klamath Basin is wrapping up south of the Oregon-California border. Harvesting conditions were good this year, though high fuel costs are beginning to affect the crop’s profitability.
Grower Scott Seus said he harvested about 500 acres this year. David Krizo, grower and vice president of the Tulelake Horseradish Growers Association, said he had 300 acres of production. The association is comprised of three growers.
The weather was more cooperative compared to last year, which had rain and cold. Mild temperatures and fair weather made the harvest less troublesome, Seus said. Both growers said the crop was average this year.
Most of the harvested crop will be going to domestic sources, but Seus and Krizo said they’ve experienced some reduction in demand because of shipping expenses associated with high fuel costs.
Seus said he’s taking several acres out of production for the future because of the increasing cost to ship the product and will shift that acreage to something with a higher profit margin.
Krizo said that he lost contracts with buyers on the East Coast because of the cost of shipping, but he was able to find more contracts on the West Coast to counteract the loss.