Poor pecan season will impact holiday prices

Published 1:26 am Saturday, November 2, 2013

If you’re planning to enjoy a pecan pie during this year’s holiday season, now might be the time to get your share of the nuts.

“It’s been real bleak this year,” Tony Holmes, owner of Holmes Pecan Company, said of this year’s harvest. “We are running at about 20 percent of our normal load.”

Holmes said several factors likely contributed to the smaller-than-average pecan harvest, but pointed mainly to the weather.

“I think it was probably the rain in the spring and summer that wiped most of it out,” he said.

Holmes said his busy months are typically from the second week in October until the last of February, adding his team will be hard at work, even with the smaller crop.

“We ship (pecans) all over the U.S.,” he said. “Probably 75 to 80 percent goes to commercial shellers.”

Holmes said his company purchases their inventory of pecans from the Covington County area.

“We buy them from locals right here,” he said. “We buy from individuals. You’ve also got your farmers who may have like 25 to 30 trees. We deal with probably a four-county area, but we’ll buy from people, and buy anything from one pound to half a million pounds.”

Holmes said his company also provides shelling services for those who would like their pecans professionally extracted from their shells, and will have candy and pastries closer to the holidays.