Hazelnut Production Update August 24, 2021

Guide to Hazelnut Production is Live

Hard copies of OMAFRA Publication 863: Guide to Hazelnut Production in Ontario are now available for purchase! Click here to be taken to the site.

As a reminder, the free PDF version is also available for download here.

Production Update

Throughout the south, nuts have been browning over the last couple of weeks and are beginning to spin in the husk. Some varieties are further along than others.

Nut maturity also varies depending on your location. A grower in Simcoe is experiencing nut fall as branches are disturbed, whereas a grower in the north is reporting nuts that are still tightly bound to fresh green husks. However, harvest is expected to start in the next few weeks for most producers.

You should be planning to flail mow in the next few weeks before harvest. A reminder that blank nuts tend to fall first, so planning a final pass with the flail mower after those have fallen will reduce the number of blanks in your final yield.

Make sure you’re out looking at your trees and assessing whether or not your harvest plan will be sufficient. Growers have reported needing to re-think their plan, as they are seeing many more nuts than they were expecting!

Refer to “Preparing for Harvest” (page 109) in the Guide to Hazelnut Production for more information.

2021 Ontario Hazelnut Assessment

This year, OMAFRA staff will be conducting an assessment of common Ontario-bred hazelnut cultivars and their kernel characteristics. There is currently no official publication of this information, and it will be very useful as growers can use these characteristics to decide which markets they would like to target.

Among other qualities, we will be looking at:

  • Nut size and shape (in-shell and kernel)
  • Consistency of nut size and shape
  • Blanching characteristics
  • Kernel fill %
  • Overall quality
  • Taste

We are looking for volunteers who can provide us with nuts for this important assessment. Please note that:

  • Nuts must be named cultivars from Ontario (i.e. no unknown/unnamed trees, no nuts from Oregon varieties such as Jefferson and Yamhill)
  • Each sample must have at least 100 hazelnuts (a good mix of nuts from different trees) of a given variety
  • The nuts must be dried

Please fill out this form if you are interested in participation. Any questions can be emailed to Jenny Liu (OMAFRA Maple, Tree Nut, and Agroforestry Specialist) at jenny.liu2@ontario.ca. Thank you for your interest!

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