Blueberry Month and Recipe Home Page (fwd)

------- start of forwarded message -------
From: Jean Fremont <mailto:jfremont@sfu.ca>
Newsgroups: sci.agriculture.fruit,rec.food.marketplace
Subject: Blueberry Month and Recipe Home Page
Date: Mon, 26 Aug 1996 09:52:23 -0700



The Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia (the Queen's 
representative) has proclaimed August to be Blueberry Month in British 
Columbia.  Blueberries, a fruit native to North America grown 
commercially in many states and provinces, are truly fit for a queen.  
What's more - they are good for her too.  

The blue in blueberries comes from the anthrocyanin pigment. 
Anthrocyanins are called phytochemicals - phyto from the Greek word for 
plant - or nutraceuticals because they act as antioxidants protecting 
body cells against undesirable oxidative changes. Anthrocyanosides 
prevent free radical damage with antioxidant and free radical scavaging 

The North American blueberry is related to the European 
bilberry (vaccinium myrtillus). Bilberries have a very 
high anthrocyanin content because the pigment 
is in both the skin and the flesh.  In the North American blueberry, the 
pigment is only found in the skin.  For that reason, small 
berries have proportionally more anthrocyanin because the 
proportion of skin to flesh is higher than in large berries. Because 
wild (lowbush) berries are generally smaller than cultivated (highbush) 
berries, the anthrocyanin content of the lowbush berries is generally 

Bilberries have been used in folk medicine in Europe for centuries 
and extracts of bilberry (sometimes mixed with blueberry extract) are sold 
in health food stores in Europe and North America.  Scientists are now 
actively investigating the health benefits of the anthrocyanin pigment 
in bilberries and blueberries. Promising research areas for the use 
of extracts from these plants are in opthamological applications, 
diabetes and inflammatory joint disease.  

Dr. Willi Kalt, a plant physiologist from the Kentville 
Agricultural Research Station in Nova Scotia, who is studying the 
anthrocyanin content of blueberries provided the following comparison:
         Anthrocyanin Content of Some Small Fruits
               in mg per 100 g fresh weight

Cranberry              60           Currant, black            250
Currant, red           15           Grape, Merlot fruit       120
Raspberry, red         40           Raspberry, black          300
Strawberry             45           Blueberries- wild lowbush 200
Blueberries- highbush 100           Bilberries                450
Partridgeberry/Lingonberry  130     Blackberries              200

Blueberries belong to the genus vaccinium as do cranberries. 
This may be the reason the blueberries are the only fruit with a 
preventive action against urinary tract infections similar to 
that of cranberries.

Judging by the tonnage of berries grown every year by some of the larger 
volume producers - New Jersey, Michigan, British Columbia and Nova Scotia 
- a lot of commoners enjoy those true blues too. Washington, Oregon, 
Georgia, the New England States and the Province of Quebec also produce fine 
berries. They are even grown now in Florida and Mississippi. Fine dining 
establishments and specialty markets in the Northern Hemisphere 
feature fresh blueberries from Australia, New Zealand and Chile in winter.

August is the height of the canning and preserving season in 
North America and now is the time to head out to a U-Pick if 
you live in a berry producing state or to load up your freezer 
with fresh berries from the grocery store. If you buy in bulk, 
a 30 pound box for instance, you can often negotiate a good price 
at your local produce market.

I am passing on an address for a home page with 
recipes developed by delta nutrition systems of Vancouver 
for the British Columbia Blueberry Council's "Savour the Flavour" 
("Savor the Flavor" south of 49) recipe booklet.  

Simply point your browser to 


and click on the photographs of the dishes that pique your 
appetite. You can print out the recipes complete with pictures to 
add to your collection.

For more blueberry recipes and blueberry health information, 
head Down Under to this page in Australia:

Lawrence F. London, Jr., Venaura Farm, Chapel Hill, NC USA 
mailto:london@sunSITE.unc.edu - http://sunSITE.unc.edu/london - InterGarden
mailto:london@mercury.interpath.net - http://www.interpath.net/~london 
Organic Agriculture-Farmscaping-CSA-Permaculture-Renewable Energy Information
Piedmont Communities Online - Community-Bioregionalism-Environment Resources
mailto:piedmont@sunsite.unc.edu - http://sunsite.unc.edu/piedmont