Cranberries

BC Cranberry Industry Backgrounder (2007)

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  • Cranberries are one of the few commercially grown fruits that are native to North America
  • The first commercial field was planted in BC in 1946
  • Cranberry harvest in BC is from September through the end of October
  • British Columbia is the second largest producer of cranberries (behind Quebec) in Canada
  • BC cranberry production is over 75 million pounds per year
  • BC cranberry production represents 12% of total North American production
  • Eighty farm families (some 4th generation) are dedicated to growing cranberries on approximately 5,600 acres in BC
  • Over 90% of BC cranberries are shipped to the USA for use in value-added Ocean Spray products
  • Off-shore markets for cranberry products include: Australia, France, Germany & Mexico
  • Over 50% of BC cranberries will be made into Craisins
  • Approximately 40% of BC cranberries will be used for juice products
  • New market development has been initiated in Korea, in keeping with the federal governments' priority to investigate export potential to this country.
  • The BC Cranberry Marketing Commission has been a part of the BC cranberry Industry since 1965
  • The BC Cranberry Marketing Commission regulates in any and all respects, the transportation, processing, packing, storage and marketing of any variety of cranberries grown in the province of British Columbia
  • Cranberries are good for you! Research points to the health benefits of cranberries consumption can be beneficial for the following illnesses: anti-cancer, anti-aging, dental, heart health and ulcers. For more health information visit the Cranberry Institute website at www.cranberryinstitute.org

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Cranberry Harvest (2009)

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We all know that it has been a very dry summer and start to fall and we are not wishing for a heavy rainy season, but with or without rain BC cranberry growers will be flooding their fields to harvest BC's biggest berry crop. Gorgeous crimson pools will be seen from Richmond to Agassiz, and on parts of Vancouver Island, over the next few weeks as cranberry growers work to bring in what looks to be the best crop in years.

"The weather has been perfect for cranberries this year" says BC Cranberry Marketing Commission Chairman, John Savage. "We had excellent pollination and fruit set this spring and now all indicators point to a crop at least 20% larger than last year."

In 2009, our 80 farm families will harvest over 80 million pounds of cranberries from 6,000 acres, from Richmond to Agassiz and on Vancouver Island. Making cranberries the biggest berry crop in BC, and making BC one of the largest cranberry producing regions in Canada!

Just what does 80 million pounds of cranberries look like? Well, it would take 1,739 semi-trailers which when lined up on Highway #1 would stretch from the South-end of the Iron Worker's Memorial Bridge in Vancouver to Glover Road in Fort Langley! Now that's a lot of cranberries!

Which is good news, as cranberry popularity continues to grow. Says Savage, "Consumers can't seem to get enough of high quality, healthy products like whole fresh or frozen cranberries, cranberry juices and Craisins."

You can find cranberry products at your local grocer, for fresh cranberries look for the Ocean Spray bag in the produce department. Or why not head out to a farmers market or festival to pick-up your fresh supply? Check out these local events:

  • The Haney Farmers Market will have a special cranberry sale on October 3rd and Bernardin will be there to show you creative ways to use cranberries in canning, visit their website at www.haneyfarmersmarket.org/hfmcalendar.htm
  • The 14th Annual Cranberry Festival takes place October 10 in Fort Langley for details visit www.cranberryfest.ca
  • Also on October 10, the Richmond Nature Park will be having their annual cranberry sale, with sale proceeds going back to the Richmond Nature Park Society, www.richmondnatureparksociety.ca
  • On Vancouver Island check out Yellow Point Cranberries activities by visiting their website at www.yellowpointcranberries.com

With emerging research on the healthful benefits of consuming cranberries, cranberry products serve the dual purpose of function and taste giving consumers more value for their grocery dollar. Cranberries are available year-round as fresh, frozen, dried or in juice. With so many convenient ways to enjoy them you can easily ensure you are getting your daily dose of this tasty and healthy addition to your diet. Visit www.bccranberries.com to find information on the industry, health and fabulous recipes.

For more information, contact:

Geraldine Auston
Director of Communications T: 604.820.4451
BC Cranberry Marketing Commission
E: gauston@shaw.ca

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Cranberry Harvest - BC's Largest Berry Crop (2007)

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The first signs of Autumn are upon us...children are back at school, days are shorter, morning air is crisp, leaves are falling and BC's largest berry crop is being harvested. Yes, it is cranberry season.

Cranberries, part of BC history since the fur trading days, remain a significant contributor to BC's economy today. The cranberry industry is BC's largest berry crop with fields yielding over 75 million pounds annually. British Columbia is the second largest cranberry producing region in Canada (behind Quebec) and our production represents 12% of total North American volumes.

"The quality for this year's crop is excellent" says John Savage, Chair of the BC Cranberry Marketing Commission, adding "BC's total cranberry crop will not meet its potential of 85 million pounds, but we will still have strong production of about 75 million pounds."

"Demand is strong for cranberries worldwide for both juice and dried (Craisins) products" noted Savage. In fact, demand is so strong for those tasty and tangyCraisins that over 50% of BC's crop will be used in their production.

Cranberry farming is a family affair in BC with eighty farm families, some 4th generation, dedicating themselves to growing this delicious, versatile and healthy berry.

Most of BC's cranberries go into products made by Ocean Spray. Says Savage, "BC cranberry growers are proud owner/members of Ocean Spray, by buying Ocean Spray products consumers are supporting BC farmers."

Delicious and versatile? Absolutely! The BC Cranberry Marketing Commission (BCCMC) wants to tempt your taste buds with recipes created to enhance the unique flavour of cranberries and to demonstrate that cranberries are not just for Christmas! Expand your adventures in cooking and find out how special cranberries are in Cranberry Sweet Potato Soup, Cranberry-Hazelnut Stuffed Pork Tenderloin and for dessert a delectable Cranberry Delight! Visit the BCCMC website at www.bccranberries.com for these recipes, information on the industry and more.

Cranberries have been known for their healthy properties for centuries. Recent scientific research shows that cranberries and cranberry products contain significant amounts of antioxidants and other phytonutrients that may help protect against heart disease, cancer and other diseases. The Cranberry Institute has posted up-to-date health research and information on their website, visit www.cranberryinstitute.org to find out more reasons for adding cranberries to your daily diet.

Cranberries are available year-round and whether fresh, frozen, dried or in juice there is always a convenient way to ensure you are getting your daily dose of this delicious and healthy addition to your diet.

Contact: Geraldine Auston
Director of Communications T: 604.820.4451
BC Cranberry Marketing Commission E: gauston@shaw.ca

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Cranberry Harvest Has Begun (2008)

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BC Fashion experts indicate that jewel tones are all the rage this fall. We couldn't agree more! Our little red gems are ready for harvest and will be on display at your grocer in time to dress-up your holiday table and so much more. Yes, the cranberry harvest has begun in BC.

Cranberries have proven their staying power year-after-year. In fact, they have been a part of BC history for at least 150 years. Traded by First Nations people with the Hudson's Bay Company, they were packed into barrels and sold to shipping companies on the western seaboard to prevent scurvy. Little did they know then that cranberry health benefits would extend far beyond this purpose and that modern day researchers would discover that cranberry antioxidant capabilities are nothing short of miraculous! Recent scientific research shows that cranberries and cranberry products contain significant amounts of antioxidants and other phytonutrients that may help protect against heart disease, cancer and other diseases.

"This year's cranberry harvest is looking tremendous" says BC Cranberry Marketing Commission Chairman, John Savage. "Conditions are excellent and throughout Canada and the United States we are looking at some of our best production numbers in years."

In 2008, our 80 farm families will harvest 85 million pounds of cranberries from 6,000 acres from Richmond to Agassiz and on Vancouver Island. Making cranberries the biggest berry crop in BC, and making BC one of the largest cranberry producing regions in Canada!

Which is good news, as cranberry popularity continues to grow. Says Savage, "Consumers can't seem to get enough of high quality, healthy products like whole fresh or frozen cranberries, cranberry juices and Craisins."

And it would seem that health savvy consumers know what they are buying. With emerging research on the healthful benefits of consuming cranberries, in a variety of forms on a daily basis, cranberry products serve the dual purpose of function and taste giving consumers more value for their grocery dollar.

More than just a passing trend, BC cranberries are not only a classic for fall and winter but their tangy, fresh taste brings flare to so many recipes throughout the year. The BC Cranberry Marketing Commission wants to tempt your taste buds with recipes created to enhance the unique flavour of cranberries. Find out how special cranberries can be in Cranberry Glazed Ham, Cranberry Chutney and sensational Cranberry Decadent Cookies. Visit our website at www.bccranberries.com for these and other recipes, information on our industry and more.

Cranberries never go out of style! They are available year-round as fresh, frozen, dried or in juice. With so many convenient ways to enjoy them you can easily ensure you are getting your daily dose of this tasty and healthy addition to your diet. Bring some home today.

For more information, contact:
Geraldine Auston
Director of Communications T: 604.820.4451
BC Cranberry Marketing Commission E: gauston@shaw.ca
www.bccranberries.com

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Cranberry Tipworm and Blueberry Gall Midge (2012)

Cranberry Tipworm and Blueberry Gall Midge

Cryptic Secrets of Tipworms - Research Unlocks Mystery
By Devon Brooks, Orchard & Vne Magazine 2012

When two insects, such as the cranberry tipworm and the blueberry gall midge, look so alike that they can’t be distinguished visually, but are actually different insects, they are called cryptic species.

This dry distinction is very important for British Columbia’s cranberry growers, who are suffering the onslaught of the cranberry tip worm.

As cranberry plantings took off in this province during the 90’s, cranberry farmers believed the infestation on their plants came from nearby blueberry farms where the gall midge had been detected a decade earlier.

Given that the insects are identical in appearance it is easy to understand why farmers made the obvious link. Even Dr. Sheila Fitzpatrick, an entomologist at the federal government’s Agassiz Research Centre, says that was her first thought.

It has taken years of testing to prove the two species are distinct and cannot interbreed. Results from Fitzpatrick’s latest study show that neither male nor female tipworms will mate with gall midges of either sex.

That means the infestation of tipworm was imported in with cranberry vines when the plantings were expanding. It was, she says, a politically touchy conclusion.

Vine growers out of the United States, where the vines were purchased, didn’t want to accept responsibility and undoubtedly, farmers putting in the new vines didn’t want to be told their plantings were the ones that brought the problem to British Columbia. At this point, where the tip worm originated is academic. “They’re here to stay,” she says. “But cranberry farmers don’t need to worry about what is happening on a neighbouring blueberry farm.”

As the gall midge is not nearly as destructive, research is now focusing on the tipworm, starting with a look at some wasps that are parasites on the tipworm, but Fitzpatrick says they have a natural incursion rate of only about one in five (18%). That helps, but it won’t be enough on its own.

Tipworm populations expand most quickly during early growth of the plants. To encourage faster growth of young vines some growers will apply large amounts of fertilizer, but this fast, succulent growth provides the perfect feeding and breeding ground for the tipworm. Careful management of nitrogen application, suggest Fitzpatrick, is needed to balance growth and breeding opportunities for the pest.

The two pesticides available are only licensed for use before berry production so once the plants are bearing fruit the pesticides cannot be used. Further, tipworm larvae reside inside the plant buds. These two pesticides are contact pesticides so the plant itself shields the insects.  A new pesticide, known by its trade name of Movento (Spirotetramat), is undergoing studies, but won’t be available until 2013.

Meanwhile Fitzpatrick is focusing her work on finding a relatively easy way for farmers to determine how large an infestation might be. Her past work identified four pheromones that attract the tipworm, making it easier to get good counts. Since the most effective pheromone probably can’t be manufactured at a reasonable cost she is working on developing a cost effective combination of the four pheromones.

Source: Orchard & Vine Magazine
http://www.orchardandvine.net