[NAFEX] Blueberries vs. Blackberries

Michael Dossett phainopepla at yahoo.com
Wed Aug 6 12:47:29 EDT 2008


Richard,

This is an interesting point.  Blackberries for processed markets in Oregon are entirely machine harvested while blueberries for processed markets are also entirely machine harvested.  Fresh markets for both are hand-picked here.  Even the firmest highbush blueberries are considered borderline for machine harvestable for fresh market use although some growers are experimenting with this.  Blueberries definitely ship better than blackberries, but I think it mostly goes back to higher yields/acre and higher price per pound to blueberry growers than blackberry growers.

There will always be a niche market for fresh blackberries in some areas and this will cause prices to be locally higher.  On the large commercial scale and worldwide market, however, blueberries definitely have the edge.

Michael Dossett
Corvallis, Oregon
www.Mdossettphoto.com
phainopepla at yahoo.com


--- On Wed, 8/6/08, Richard J.Ossolinski <ossoeo at verizon.net> wrote:

> From: Richard J.Ossolinski <ossoeo at verizon.net>
> Subject: Re: [NAFEX] Blueberries vs. Blackberries
> To: "North American Fruit Explorers" <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
> Date: Wednesday, August 6, 2008, 9:22 AM
> Hello, all,
> 
> Blueberries, at least the lowbush type with which I'm
> familiar, lend 
> themselves to mechanical harvesting once their habitat has
> been cleared 
> of rocks and boulders - a huge undertaking/expense but one
> which 
> growers in this area (which shares with Hammonton, N.J. the
> status of 
> "Blueberry Capital of the World") have chosen to
> incur, as it minimizes 
> reliance on (increasingly unpredictable) manpower at
> harvest time, 
> which correlates to a more controlled, predictable harvest,
> hence a 
> positive effect on the bottom line.  I can't imagine
> even firm 
> blackberries withstanding the rigors of mechanical 
> harvesting/processing that blueberries routinely endure
> with little 
> consequence.  Then again, I don't know diddly-squat
> about blackberries, 
> except that our local ones need to be handled with TLC.
> 
> Richard
> Gouldsboro, ME Zone 5, and just a few days shy of the first
> ripe Puget 
> Golds
> 
> On Aug 6, 2008, at 10:44 AM, Mark & Helen Angermayer
> wrote:
> 
> > This is puzzling.  Fruit Grower News indicated
> blueberry production is 
> > expected to expand, in the near future, more than any
> other fruit.  As 
> > indicated by the article Sam posted, they are even
> growing them in 
> > Utah.  I can understand their popularity, they are
> tasty.  What I 
> > don't understand is why growers aren't putting
> in more blackberries.  
> > Around here, blackberries sell for quite a bit more
> than blueberries.  
> > At the grocers, they sell California blackberries in
> a little 6 oz. 
> > container for $2.50, equating to $7.50 per #.  The
> blackberries didn't 
> > even look that good.  Blueberries sell for $2.00 per
> # at the same 
> > store.
> >  
> > I know a blackberry grower who goes to a farmer's
> market and sells 
> > out in the first hour, charging $3.75 per #.  He is
> thinking about 
> > buying blackberries from out of state in order to sell
> more. 
> >  
> > We've been giving them away.  One lady, whom we
> gave some to, called 
> > back and wanted to buy some.  She said the place that
> she normally 
> > buys them was sold out.  We ended up selling
> blackberries without even 
> > trying.
> >  
> > Why isn't there more blackberry hype?
> >  
> > Mark
> > KS_______________________________________________
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