Sure­fire sea­sonal items are the things we antic­i­pate with glee and giddy. The dev­as­tat­ing losses of the Cal­i­for­nia cherry crop this year make the 2019 North­west fruit even more desir­able.

Cher­ries are one of the fresh­est pro­duce items avail­able for a very short dura­tion in the sum­mer.

Tree-​ripened, they are gen­er­ally har­vested, packed and shipped within two days, start to fin­ish.

North­west grow­ing regions are scat­tered through­out Wash­ing­ton, Ore­gon, Idaho, Utah, and Mon­tana. Small dif­fer­ences in the micro­cli­mates allow cher­ries through­out the region to ripen at dif­fer­ent times through the sea­son.

As har­vests win­dows depend on weather, Mother Nature had a heavy hand in this year’s late start. The sea­son has finally arrived. Now through August, we expect to enjoy scrump­tious North­west cherry varieties.

The Bing is lead­ing com­mer­cial sweet cherry in North Amer­ica. Fruit is firm, juicy and a deep-​mahogany-​red when ripe. Typ­i­cally, fruit is excep­tion­ally large with an intensely sweet, vibrant fla­vor. Bing have become the gold bar stan­dard to which all other vari­eties are des­tined to be com­pared. As they cycle through har­vests, there are plenty of incred­i­ble cherry vari­eties.

The Chelan vari­ety is the lead­ing early-​ripening sweet cherry of the Pacific North­west. Fruit ripens about two weeks ahead of Bing and is first to mar­ket. It resem­bles Bing with firm, round, heart-​shaped fruit of good size. This deep, mahogany red cherry ahead of Bing is less sus­cep­ti­ble to rain-​cracking.

The Rainier vari­ety is that very attrac­tive, excep­tion­ally large, yel­low cherry with a red blush. Rainiers have a dis­tinc­tive and supe­rior appear­ance among sweet cherry vari­eties. Del­i­cately flavoured with extra­or­di­nary sugar lev­els, the flesh is pure yel­low, very firm and finely tex­tured. A pre­mium niche vari­ety that ripens after Bing.

Sweet­heart, Lapin, Skeena and Tieton are other world class vari­eties com­ing from regional North­west grow­ers. Each has unique char­ac­ter­is­tics, but all are impres­sive in size, qual­ity, appear­ance and taste.

The mul­ti­ple health ben­e­fits asso­ci­ated with sum­mer cher­ries are just the treat on top when it comes to enjoy­ing this sweet-​tart fruit. From get­ting a bet­ter night’s sleep to man­ag­ing the waist­line, cher­ries are a super wise choice.

Ver­sa­tile, sea­sonal and avail­able right now, cher­ries are the favoured pick.

To read the full Mar­ket Report, includ­ing this week’s mar­ket update, see below or click here.