California's 2004 almond crop has shrunk almost 2 percent from the subjective to the objective crop survey, but it remains projected at more than 1 billion pounds.

The June 30 objective almond forecast for the 2004-2005 crop year is 1.08 billion meat pounds, according to the California Agricultural Statistics Service (CASS). This forecast is based on 550,000 bearing acres.

Gary Nelson of CASS said the forecast is down 1.8 percent from the May 10, 2004 subjective forecast of 1.1 billion meat pounds and up 4.6 percent from this year's crop to date of 1.033 billion pounds as of May 31, 2004.

The average nut set per tree is 7,162, up 2 percent from the 2003 almond crop. The Nonpareil average nut set of 6,676 represents a 9 percent increase from last year's set. The average kernel weight for all varieties sampled was 1.45 grams, down 13 percent from last year.