Cherry season is an eagerly awaited produce event that begins in late April as cherries from California begin making their way from orchard to grocer. Because California growers open the cherry season, they often set the tone and can impact the demand throughout the rest of the season. The better the initial shipments of cherries look, the higher sales are expected to be as consumers consistently return to retailers for cherries throughout the summer. Smaller, lackluster cherries can dissuade people from return purchases though a fresh, sweet, ample yield can translate into 4% of retailer’s produce category sales or more depending on quality.
As cherries aren’t available all year, sellers often see an excitement built up around the first shipments and it’s the business of CFI to make sure those cherries are the freshest, plumpest fruits possible. By ensuring shipments are chilled immediately after harvest and following strict quality control along the journey, cherries can keep their harvest flavor all the way from farm to table. Though cherries are not sensitive to chilling temperatures, it’s important to have them in the retail market as fast as possible after harvest for optimum freshness and quality to prevent prices from falling as fresh fruit arrives each and every day.
Cherries are a unique item as they ship to a wide assortment of countries including, China, Korea, Germany, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Vietnam, Australia, Brazil, etc. straight from the United States. In relations to other fruits, cherries are an exceptionally high value commodity due to their relatively short season and it’s vital to monitor them throughout the cool chain and preserve this value. As CFI works with growers all over the country to provide cherries around the world, we’ve developed a carefully managed process so that our fruits set the benchmark for quality on store shelves.