Nut Evaluation Day

Michigan Nut & Fruit Growers Association is reviving the Nut Evaluation.  Our first in many years was held on January 11, 2014. The goal is to evaluate the different nuts, compare them, and then seek scions from the most desirable trees to be able to clone them.  The scions are grafted onto other member’s trees so that more of the same nuts can be produced, with the owner’s permission, of course.

Nuts from the 2018 crop were cracked and weighed.  Evaluation results were shown at the Spring Meeting on March 23, 2019.  You can also request a copy of the results after the meeting via email or phone.

2014 Nut Evaluation Score Sheet View

Above is the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet used to record all of the results from the Nut Evaluation Day.  Many thanks to the Nebraska Nut Growers Association for the use of their Excel file.

Hican 5-nut sample prior to cracking. US quarters shown for size comparison.

Hican 1 sample after cracked out of the shell. The meats on the left are from the first crack and represent 75% of the meats. A good first crack number.

Hican 1 sample after cracked out of the shell. The meats on the left are from the first crack and represent 75% of the meats. A good first crack number.

2014NutEvalScoreSheetView

Here are the results for the 2014 Michigan Nut & Fruit Growers Association Nut Evaluation.  Members were asked to provide samples of their favorite nuts for evaluation.  5 nuts  of each sample were photographed, weighed, cracked with a lever-type nut cracker, separated into a “First Crack” and “Second Crack” groups (second crack referred to using side cutters to cut the rest of the nut meats from the shells), weighed, photographed after cracked and then the results recorded in the chart.

It took some time to gather all of the information, but we believe that this is the beginning of the process to get the best nuts.  The plan now is to gather scions from the best trees where possible and make the scions available to the members at the MNFGA spring meeting for grafting.  Cloning in this way is the best and fastest method to get the same quality nuts as the original.

When viewing the Score Sheet, note that there are tabs on the bottom for the different nut species.

To get the current spread sheet for the 2017 harvest, please contact the President.

Note for 2018 harvest:  send your 10 Michigan-grown nut samples to the President no later than February 1, 2019.  They will be evaluated, added to the 2019 spreadsheet and then reviewed at the March 23, 2019 Spring MNFGA Meeting.

The nut samples were placed in bags after being cracked and their data was recorded.
The nut samples were placed in bags after being cracked and their data was recorded.
Hican sample 1 prior to Cracking.  US quarters in photo for size comparison.
Hican sample 1 prior to Cracking. US quarters in photo for size comparison.
Hican 1 sample after cracked out of the shell.  The meats on the left are from the first crack and represent 75% of the meats.  A good first crack number.
Hican 1 sample after cracked out of the shell. The meats on the left are from the first crack and represent 75% of the meats. A good first crack number.

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