From a financial point of view, hazelnuts are an ideal special crop, as they are continuously scarce and have high profit margins. It will start producing nuts in approximately 4 to 5 years, with an average yield of 7 pounds of hazelnuts per well-established plant. The goal of the UMHDI is to develop hazelnut germplasm that is acclimated to the growing conditions of the Upper Midwest and with a predictable yield that can support profitable commercial production. Hazelnuts won because, on the one hand, labor needs seemed more compatible with the family's work of producing dairy products and growing 1,400 acres of corn, soybeans, alfalfa, winter wheat and a cover crop of rye as fodder.
Hovel planted hazelnuts along with blueberries and evergreens on 6 acres of a 40-acre mountainous field. Botanically, most nuts are the seeds of a fruit, while true nuts, such as chestnuts, acorns, and hazelnuts, are fruits in and of themselves. A hazelnut is ripe when its hairy outer shell splits and reveals its hard shell, which must be broken to obtain the edible grain or flesh of the nut. Hybrid hazelnuts (native hazelnuts crossed with European hazelnuts) are at the heart of their work.
However, as recently reported in Capital Press, the minimum starting price of hazelnuts right now is about half of what it was last year. Their root systems could also prevent nutrients from leaking into groundwater when hazelnuts are planted in well protection areas and riverine buffer zones. Ferrero is the world's largest consumer of hazelnuts; the company uses approximately a quarter of the world's hazelnuts. He plans to expand plantations annually as he gains experience growing and eventually harvesting hazelnuts.
Although hazelnuts are monoecious (they have male and female flowers on the same tree), they are incompatible with each other, meaning that a tree cannot produce nuts with its own pollen.