Oregon’s hazelnut industry down 18 percent, experts predict

National agricultural experts recently predicted that Oregon will produce 18 percent less hazelnuts this year than it did last year.

The Register-Guard reported ( ) Thursday that the experts conducted field and lab tests to predict the state will produce 36,000 tons (32,700 metric tons) of hazelnuts this year. The state produced 44,000 tons (40,000 metric tons) last year.

Hazelnut growers and representatives, however, said the industry’s production is tough to predict and has become even tougher in recent years.

Garry Rodakowski, chairman of the Oregon Hazelnut Commission, says he wasn’t too surprised by this year’s forecast of a smaller crop.

Rodakowski says some of his hazelnut trees and colleagues’ trees have been hit by a deadly fungus.

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