New York grape growers concerned about low offer

Local News
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The Westfield Mead Grape Growers Co-op met Monday night to discuss a low offer by Cott Beverage Corporation, based out of Dunkirk New York. 
 
Many of the growers sell exclusively to Cott  now offering only $117  per ton of grapes.  That’s half the price they were paying 2  years ago.  The growers need at least $250 per ton to make a small profit.  The growers told JET 24/ FOX 66  they can’t make ends meet with such a low price. 
 
“That’s a huge loss for us and we have enough growers in our cooperative that are going to experience some very hard financial difficulties this year” Said Kirk Hutchinson a member of the co-op concerned about not selling his crop. 
 
“After harvest we have an option to settle on a final price but,  it doesn’t seem at this point that that is going to be happening” said Allan Rassie, President of the co-op.
 
He said negotiations for a higher price are unlikely. 
 
“It will impact school districts, taxes, as far as growers there is  quite a number of acres that belong to the cooperative, and it could impact other  co-op’s such as Welch’s” he said describing the negative economic impact this could have on  surrounding communities. 

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