CORRECTING and REPLACING Washington to Harvest 110 Million Pounds of Blueberries

Early Harvest Update

CORRECTION...by Washington Blueberry Commission

SEATTLE--()--The headline of release should read: 110 Million Pounds (instead of 110,000 Pounds). Please also replace the first paragraph of the release with the following corrected version due to multiple revisions:

Washington blueberry growers will harvest 110 million pounds of fresh berries this season, an increase of more than 14 million pounds from 2014, and an 85% increase over the 2010 harvest of 60 million pounds.

The corrected release reads:

WASHINGTON TO HARVEST 110 MILLION POUNDS OF BLUEBERRIES

Early Harvest Update

Washington blueberry growers will harvest 110 million pounds of fresh berries this season, an increase of more than 14 million pounds from 2014, and an 85% increase over the 2010 harvest of 60 million pounds.

The Washington Blueberry Commission reports U-pick berry farms are currently open in Eastern Washington, and statewide by July 4. The Commission has launched www.superblues.net to locate U-pick farms and farm stands in Washington State. Washington State had ideal conditions for blueberries this year, with no frost or snow and more availability especially for fresh berries.

Dr. Alan Schreiber, Washington Blueberry Commission Executive Director, says consumer awareness about the health benefits of blueberries is driving the increase in production. Blueberries are a good source of dietary fiber and vitamin C, and are high in antioxidants, which protect against cancer, heart disease, and other age related diseases. Emerging Asian market options have also spurred the increase in production.

“Growers are keeping up with demand, making this the tenth record crop in a row,” Schreiber said. “Growers have increased organic and conventional production on 13,000 acres, with 2,500 acres of organic - making Washington State the largest concentration of organic fresh blueberries in the U.S. Large plantings in eastern Washington have contributed to the increase, and almost all the new plantings are of high-yielding varieties planted in higher densities, with highly efficient drip irrigation.”

“The Blueberry Commission continues to educate growers on all aspects of food safety and production - from safe food handling and fertilizer application to fresh sales best practices,” he continued. “We have trained more than (75) handlers again this season to ensure our berries are safe, with third-party certification process in place for all wholesale and retail sales.”

Washington blueberry production:

  • 2006 18.4 million pounds
  • 2007 28.5 million pounds
  • 2010 60 million pounds
  • 2013 80 million pounds
  • 2014 96 million pounds

Washington is third in U.S. blueberry production with 13,000 acres of berries from 175 growers The state's blueberry season runs from June through August while processed ‘blues’ are available year round. Washington blueberries are grown in Skagit, Clark, Lewis, Snohomish, Thurston, Whatcom, Chelan, Yakima and Benton, Franklin, Walla Walla, and Grant Counties.

Contacts

For the Washington Blueberry Commission
Pete Delaunay, 206-579-4883

Contacts

For the Washington Blueberry Commission
Pete Delaunay, 206-579-4883