The annual Black Walnut Harvest is upon us with hulling stations opening up across the Midwest on Monday, October 2. Hammons Products Company’s network of hullers will be paying an opening price of $15 per 100 pounds (after hulling) to individuals or groups who bring their Black Walnuts to one of the 235+ hulling sites in 14 different states. The price may change later in the season, so people are encouraged to get their nuts in by early October. To find a hulling station near you, visit www.black-walnuts.com.
Early projections of the harvest are positive. “This year’s crop of wild Black Walnuts looks to be good throughout the Midwest region where the trees grow naturally,” says Brian Hammons, President of Hammons Products in Stockton, Missouri. “We hope for an abundant harvest of at least 24 million pounds of nuts, and perhaps as many as 30 million pounds. This would be a very good harvest after the past 3 years with below-average crops.”
Every year thousands of people participate in the harvest with their friends and family, picking up the Black Walnuts off their own land, or possibly the land of their neighbors. They sell the nuts to a nearby hulling station to earn some extra money, or just because it’s a fall tradition. “Some folks picked up Black Walnuts when they were young and continue to pass along the lessons of nature and work with their grandchildren,” says Hammons.
This year, Hammons Products has added 38 hulling stations in the Midwest, 15 of which are in new markets for the company. This expansion of hulling stations shows the growth of the Black Walnut industry as a whole, with the demand for Black Walnuts at an all-time high. Buzz for Black Walnuts has been increasing in the health food sector, with chefs and bloggers utilizing the nut in more diverse ways than ever before. For examples and up-to-date information on all things Black Walnuts, follow Hammons Black Walnuts on Facebook: www.facebook.com/HammonsBlackWalnuts/.
For recipes, visit http://blackwalnuts.wpengine.com/explore-recipes/.