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Buy local urges BC Tree Fruits, as U.S. cherries flood market

Late-season American cherries are being sold in the Okanagan, rather than fresh, locally-grown fruit
Cherries (File Photo)

The BC Tree Fruit Growers Association (BCFGA) is urging people to check the label and make an effort to buy locally-grown cherries, instead of the cheaper and older American variety.

Typically, cherries grown in California and Washington are harvested before the fruit in B.C.

However, this year some American cherries are still being sold on the Canadian market in July, which is much later than normal, causing competition for local farmers.

“In the past week, some inferior-quality cherries from California and Washington State are being sold in the Canadian retail marketplace. Much of this fruit has been weeks off of the tree. There are also reports of ‘consignment selling’ of U.S. cherries, where sellers ship the product without a price - a signal that dumping at below the cost of production is occurring,” said Peter Simonsen, president of the BCFGA.

The BCFGA has initiated the first step of an ‘anti-dumping trade’ action and has requested that the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) monitors the pricing and quantities of imports.

BC Fruit Growers are encouraging consumers to buy cherries that are fresh, with green stems, for maximum flavour and minimum shelf life.

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Jacqueline Gelineau

About the Author: Jacqueline Gelineau

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