4.11.2010

Strawberries for 88 Cents a Pound!


Holy guacamole, strawberries are 88 cents a pound at my local Town and Country grocery store! Apparently there is a bumper crop going on in Florida. There are so many strawberries that farmers are actually plowing under their fields of ripe berries because they can't sell them for enough to cover the cost of picking them. Now they can get their next crop of melons in the ground and hopefully get some early ones that will bring a higher price.

A flat of strawberries can be up to $20 in Florida during early spring before the northern states have started producing. Right now, a flat is worth only about $5.90 to $6.90, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture statistics released Wednesday. Most farmers can't afford to pick for less than $7 a flat. Some farms are opening their fields up to locals offering U-pick and others have agreements to sell to a processing company that slices and freezes the strawberries.

What caused this over load of strawberries?  Florida had an unusually cold winter with several freezing nights. When the strawberry plants revived and spring came along they snapped out of it and all produced a lot of fruit at once.

It's still a little too early for strawberries around me in Northwest Indiana. Probably the end of this month into May and June I'll be able to get fresh local strawberries.

In the mean time, I hope you support the farmers and enjoy cheap Florida strawberries. I'm thinking I might even cut and freeze some to enjoy this fall and winter on pancakes and what not or perhaps strawberry jam?  When life gives your strawberries, what do you make?

2 comments:

  1. Anonymous4/13/2010

    When fruit is cheap I make jams that I freeze. I don't add much sugar if at all. It is just fruit and a few tablespoons of water to the pot. It is wonderfull on pancakes, waffles, toast, just about anything. There is so much sugar in the fruit, some times it doesn't freeze all the way. But it keeps for months in the freezer.

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  2. What a shame that is happening with strawberry growers in Florida! I haven't had access to them in SW WA or I would have been buying them too. It is important to support US farmers and I commend you for doing so. The life of farmers is not easy. Every farmer who reaches a mature age has gone through a crop loss. When I do public speaking about this, I ask my audience to imagining working a whole year for a pay check which just isn't there on pay day. But this is where food comes from. This is real life. Make Jam!

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