Sunday, January 16, 2011

Blueberries in Canada

Blueberries grow wild in many parts of the world. Blueberries are mainly important in Canada and the USA.

Other producers include the countries of Scandinavia and eastern Europe. In recent years there has been increased planting in New Zealand, France and UK.

North America farmers grow over 103 million pounds of blueberries a year. Canada and United States supply almost 95% of the total blueberries for the food industry.

Cultivation highbush harvesting begins in the spring in the southern United States and continues in Nova Scotia and British Columbia into October.

Cultivated blueberries grow in clusters and the berries do not ripen all at once. The berries at the bottom of the cluster may be ripe, while the ones on top are still green.

Highbush berries are grown in British Columbia and on much smaller scale in Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes.

Canada is top wild blueberry producer in the world, while Nova Scotia contributes one-quarter of the total amount.

Domestic and international demand for berries is on the rise with increased public awareness of the many health benefits associated with berry consumption, including high fiber content and antioxidant activity.

Canada acreage of cultivated berries has more than double in western Canada during the past decade.

British Columbia is the largest blueberry producer in Canada. About 60 to 70 percent of the blueberries sold in North America are cultivated.

Half of the commercial blueberries are turned into jams, pies and other bakery products and processed food.
Blueberries in Canada

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