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Voting starting soon to renew Michigan Tree Fruit Research and Development Program

TRAVERSE CITY — An important program for fruit farmers is up for renewal this spring.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development is looking to continue the Michigan Tree Fruit Research and Development Program, which was first approved in 2014.

The program provides support for fruit research stations and extension programs, and must be renewed by a vote of farmers every five years.

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Ballots will be mailed to Michigan cherry, apple, peach and plum farmers.

“They provided everything from new trees, new trellis systems to deer fences. We have a beautiful platform to work on high density systems and all of that’s been through the support of this program and growers that have supported this program with their dollars and we’ve been able to do a ton of neat things,” Nikki Rothwell, NW Michigan Horticultural Research Center Coordinator, said.

Voting will happen from Feb. 26 to March 8.

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