Stemilt Brings More Cherry Volumes to Market; Brianna Shales Comments

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Wed. July 12th, 2023 - by Jenna Plasterer

WENATCHEE, WA - If you’re looking to add more cherries to your display, call up Stemilt stat, for the grower has got your orders covered with Stemilt World Famous cherries. Guaranteed for consistent top flavor, size, and quality, you’ll see success this summer on your produce floor as volumes increase.

Brianna Shales, Marketing Director, Stemilt“Stemilt is a leader in cherries because we provide consistent quality to keep people shopping for them all season long,” said Brianna Shales, Marketing Director. “Size, flavor, and firmness are very important in a high-quality cherry, and we’re obsessive about picking cherries at the optimal times. Cherries don’t get sweeter after picking, so it’s important to pick fruit when it’s ready, even if that means multiple picks to get the best sizes and flavors.”

From the farm to the packing line, there’s a short amount of time to keep cherries fresh. Cherries do not have stored carbohydrates, so Stemilt uses a cold chain from the orchard to the packing line to maximize freshness for the retailer. This process helps put the shelf-life back into the hands of retailers and consumers.

Stemilt’s Rainier, Skylar Rae®, and Kyle’s Pick® cherries will all be available in July, and A Half Mile Closer to the Moon® cherries will become available in August

“We have one of the largest networks of on-farm mobile hydrocoolers that allow us to bring the internal temperature of cherries way down quickly after harvest,” noted Shales. “First, they’re picked from the tree, placed in bins, and covered by an icy cold cloth. Then, we take the bins through the mobile hydrocoolers at or very near the farm. Lastly, we transfer cherries in refrigerated trucks to the packing line, where in-line hydrocooling helps us pack them fresh.”

Starting the cold chain early and doing it right means retailers have fresh cherries to sell, improving the cherry-eating experience. There are many elements that go into Stemilt’s cherry program that focus on quality, specifically to help drive repeat purchases at the point of sale.

“We’re very particular about the varieties we grow and focus on selecting the best sites for growing special varieties like Rainier, Skylar Rae®, Kyle’s Pick®, and A Half Mile Closer to the Moon® cherries,” continued Shales. “Packaging is a great tool to use to distinguish the different varieties. Bags are the primary packaging vehicles for cherries, and clamshells or top seal are other great options for organics and specialty items. With an increase in cherry volume this year, there’s traction with 3 lb clamshells and top seal to increase purchase sizes of dark-sweet cherries.”

Stemilt optimizes a cold chain from the orchard to the packing line to maximize freshness for the retailer

Rainier, Skylar Rae, and Kyle’s Pick cherries will all be available in July, and A Half Mile Closer to the Moon cherries in August.

Check out the release here for more information.

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