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Haskap Berries

Hey, those blue-rrr berries are not blueberries!

An exciting new development is taking place in Canada’s boreal forests; a new berry crop has been discovered and is in the early stages of commercial development.   Lonicera caerulea, a native plant species commonly referred to as “Blue Honeysuckle”, has shown dramatic promise for development as a berry crop.  Sweet and tangy with bright blue berries which boast an intensely colour-rich pulp, this looks like a door opening to new fresh berries at farmers markets, as well as novel jams, jellies, wines and juices. 

Early investigations by collaborators at PEI’s Food Technology Centre and  NRC’s Institute for Nutrisciences and Health have found that these blue-rrr berries (called Haskap in Asian markets) contain high levels of the antioxidant Cyanadin-3-glucoside.  A series of trials is underway to fully evaluate berry antioxidant levels and methods of extraction of this biologically active component.

Phytocultures Ltd., Eastern Canada’s licensed propagator of Haskap varieties, has planting stock available for sale starting August 2009.  Contact the Phytocultures office at (902) 629-1229 or view their web site at www.phytocultures.com for their new developments.