Wise Bread has an interesting story about the economics behind a family trip to a “U Pick” apple orchard. Picking your own apples is now called “agritainment,” and it’s a better deal for the orchard than it is for you. On the other hand, the high prices for an “apple picking experience” may be the only thing keeping the apple trees on the land—and not another subdivision.
On a recent visit to Kuipers Family Farm, about an hour from Chicago, I shelled out $6.50 each for my husband, our 3-year-old daughter and myself to enter the orchard and pick 1/4 peck of apples, about 3 pounds. I could have sat on my couch and ordered a 3-pound-bag of apples from Peapod for $2.50.