News Summary: Bad weather a boon for Wash. apples?

CRAZY WEATHER: Warm spring weather in the Northeast and Midwest tricked apple trees into budding early this year, and then a late frost damaged the blossoms.

CROPS CRIMPED: Crops in apple-producing states like New York and Michigan shrank, falling off as much as 90 percent.

APPLES JUICED: The declines are a boon for Washington state growers, who are experiencing a near record harvest and can look forward to higher demand and prices. That could mean a banner year for profitability, if the weather cooperates and they find enough pickers to bring in the big haul.