SOURCE: Northwest Cherries

Northwest Cherries

June 26, 2012 16:22 ET

Sweet Northwest Cherries Hitting Grocery Stores Nationwide Late June, Just in Time for July 4th Holiday

An American Summertime Staple, Sweet Cherries Grown in the Northwest US Are Treasured Super Fruits to Be Enjoyed During Their Peak Season and Beyond

YAKIMA, WA--(Marketwire - Jun 26, 2012) - The 2012 crop of Northwest sweet cherries is beginning to arrive on grocery store shelves in full-force around the country, putting the classic Americana fruit front and center for the Fourth of July holiday. Despite a late start due to cooler weather, growers in the Northwest states anticipate a robust sweet cherry season lasting through August, so consumers can enjoy their fresh and delicious American-grown super fruits through the thick of summer.

"Most Northwest Cherries are picked, chilled and shipped within one day, making sweet cherries one of the fastest and freshest tree-to-table fruits," said James Michael, Promotions Director for the Northwest Cherry Growers, a growers' organization representing Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Utah, which together produce two-thirds of the nation's entire sweet cherry crop. "Cherries grown in the Northwest benefit from the regions' distinct microclimates and rich volcanic soils, which produce cherries with an exceptional flavor profile and the perfect amount of sweetness all summer long."

Not only are sweet cherries a fresh and easy treat, but a great deal of research points to sweet cherries as a powerful and complex super fruit. Sweet cherries are particularly praised for their ability to fight inflammation through their phytochemical properties, especially their dark red color-giving anthocyanins. In addition, sweet cherries have also been associated with the prevention and regulation of several ailments, including Alzheimer's disease, cancer, diabetes, hypertension and stroke. And as one of the few plant sources of melatonin, sweet cherries may also aid in an increased quality of sleep.

The Northwest is known for seven regional varieties including Bing cherries, the most popular cherry in North America, and the unique golden-blushed Rainiers, born at Washington State University in 1952 and celebrated each year on July 11 as National Rainer Cherry Day. Other popular varieties include the deep dark Skeenas, bright red Sweethearts, juicy sweet Tietons, heart-shaped Chelans and late-season Lapins. Aside from the light-hued Rainier (whose juice does not stain, Moms), consumers can typically spot sweet cherries by their darker red skins -- in general, the darker, the sweeter!

A beloved Independence Day treat for baking pies with less sugar or eating fresh from the stem, sweet cherries can also be enjoyed year round by simply rinsing and freezing them, as well as canning or drying. A complete collection of both fresh cherry and cherry preservation recipes can be found at www.nwcherries.com, including delicious cherry bruschetta, cherry glazed chicken breast, classic cherry pie or even brandied cherries.

For more information on sweet Northwest Cherries, seasonal recipes, health information and more, visit www.nwcherries.com.

About Northwest Cherries and Washington State Fruit Commission
Washington State Fruit Commission is a growers' organization funded by fruit assessments to increase awareness and consumption of regional stone fruits. The organization is dedicated to the promotion, education, market development, and research of soft fruits from Northwest orchards. It began in 1947 and has since grown to include five states -- Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Utah and Montana. For more information, visit www.nwcherries.com or www.wastatefruit.com.

Contact Information

  • For more information, media only:
    Jamie Hinz
    Duo PR for Northwest Cherries
    206-957-8305
    Jamie@duopr.com