The blueberry of the genus Vaccinium, is a native American species. Early settlers cherished the fruit as a staple ingredient in foods and medicines. They incorporated the berries into their diets, eating them fresh off the bush and adding them to soups, stews, and many other foods. North America is the world's leading blueberry producer, accounting for nearly 90% of world production at the present time. The North American harvest runs from mid-April through early October, with peak harvest in July which is also known as National Blueberry Month
The improved Blueberry
Efforts in the early 1900's by Elizabeth White and Dr. Frederick
Coville to domesticate the wild highbush blueberry resulted in today's
cultivated blueberry industry. Their initial breeding work has resulted
in the plump, juicy, sweet and easy to pick cultivated blueberry we enjoy
today. For more information on their breakthrough go to www.whitesbog.org
For decades Cultivated Blueberries have been improved through natural selection and plant breeding programs to produce an optimal blueberry with desirable flavor, texture and color. Cultivated varieties have been enhanced to offer magnificent plump berries with deep, rich color and a delicious fruity flavor. These plant breeding programs have resulted in the development of superior berries both for the consumer and the food processing industry.
The Cultivated Blueberry Market
Cultivated blueberries are grown in more than 30 states as well as in British Columbia. Nearly half of the cultivated blueberries grown are sold as fresh blueberries. Fresh blueberries are available for nearly eight months of the year from producers across the Untied States and Canada. They are prized by consumers who find them readily available in the produce section.