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Pumpkins smaller, better-looking this year

CANAL WINCHESTER, Ohio (UPI) -- Ohio pumpkin growers said drought during a hot summer reduced the size and number of their pumpkins, but abundant sunlight created better-looking specimens.

Lisa Schacht, co-owner of Schacht Family Farm and Market in Canal Winchester and president of the Ohio Produce Growers and Marketers Association, said growers who properly watered their crops should have a good number of very attractive pumpkins to offer Halloween revelers, The Columbus Dispatch reported Friday.

"Overall, there should be a good-size, quality harvest," Schacht said.

Pumpkin prices have thus far remained similar to last year's prices, but Roz O'Hearn, spokeswoman for Nestle USA, maker of Libby's-brand pumpkin products, said it is too soon to tell whether the drought will affect the price of canned pumpkin products for the holidays.

"Our harvest is under way now," O'Hearn said. The many thousands of acres of pumpkin we grow are located right in the midst of the drought-stricken area, 50 miles out in any direction from Morton, Ill., where we pack the pumpkins we pick.

Copyright 2012 by United Press International

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