Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc., a grower-owned cooperative based in Lakeville-Middleboro, MA, announced its latest estimate for the 2013 cranberry crop, with the harvest just under way.
Providing conditions stay as expected, Ocean Spray believes the global industry crop will range between 11.1 million and 11.5 million barrels, coming in close to the 2012 global industry crop of 11.2 million barrels.
Approximately 80 percent of the cranberries harvested will be consumed in North America with the remaining 20 percent shipped overseas. The cooperative is focused on international expansion and aggressively marketing cranberries abroad. Cranberries are featured in more than 1,000 products in over 50 countries worldwide.
"As a cooperative, our mission is to market the fruit of our grower-owners," Randy Papadellis, president and chief executive officer of Ocean Spray, said in a press release. "To do that, Ocean Spray is focused on increasing demand for our great-tasting, good-for-you cranberry products through bold market expansion, development of new distribution channels and product innovation. These efforts benefit not only Ocean Spray's grower-owners but the entire cranberry industry."
Ocean Spray grower-owners are located throughout all cranberry-growing regions including Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oregon, Washington and Wisconsin, as well as British Columbia and eastern Canada. This June, Ocean Spray also celebrated its first springtime harvest in Chile.
"Harvesting cranberries is the culmination of an entire year's worth of work," fourth-generation Ocean Spray grower Gary Garretson, CEO of southeastern Massachusetts based Slocum-Gibbs Cranberry Co., added in the press release. "The crop looks good and we're excited to be underway with our harvest and bringing in the fruit that will become 'Ocean Spray' products."
The North American harvest begins in mid-September and runs through mid-November finishing just in time for Thanksgiving.
Of the 400 million pounds (4 million barrels) of cranberries Americans consume annually, 20 percent -- or 80 million pounds -- will be consumed Thanksgiving week.