Cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon L.) belongs to the same genus as blueberry and huckleberry. Having evergreen leaves, cranberries grow in acidic bogs throughout the cooler regions of USA and Canada. The berry is initially white but turns to its characteristic scarlet colour in July-August. At this point the berries are harvested by a unique process called bogging, where the entire field is flooded with water followed by driving a harvester through the plants. Floating berries are then corral to a corner of the bed making it easier to convey or pump directly into the processing plant.
Being one of the few commercially grown plants native to North America, cranberry is a unique crop to BC farm lands. British Columbia produces 12% of the worlds cranberry harvest.
Cranberries has slightly acidic and sour flavour yet has a firm pleasing flesh similar to a grape raisin texture when dried. The ripe berry itself has a traditional uses in jams, jellies, sauces, stuffing and desserts in seasonal dinners such as “Thanks Giving” and “Christmas”. No other berry has been commercialized as aggressively as the cranberries for its juice. In the recent past global demand for dried cranberries has doubled and is predicted to double again in next 3 years.
- Prevention of Urinary tract infection. Cranberries have proven benefits as an anti-adhesion agent. It contains proanthocyanidins that can inhibit bacterial adhesion to the walls of the urinary tract.
- Recent dental research has shown that dried cranberry fruit has favourable anti-decay benefits. Probably attributed to the antioxidants in cranberries.
- Quercetin in cranberries (which found as the most active flavonoid in studies) has anti-inflammatory activity since it inhibits some of the process of inflammation at the onset.
- Myricetin is a flavonoid (pigment) found in cranberries and is considered an antioxidant, fighting free radicals. It is thought to have anti-cancer properties, including the ability to lower the chances of prostate cancer. Myricetin may also lower cholesterol levels.
- The phenolic content of dried cranberries is likely to be higher and therefore have more antioxidant benefits.
- In documents that have survived since 17 th century shows the abundance use of Cranberry in assortment of medicinal purposes such as stomach ailments, liver problems and blood disorders. It is high in vitamin C and found its way to the sea as a remedy for Scurvy.
Tropical Link Canada Ltd. specializes in Dried Sliced or Whole Cranberries.
Sweetened Dried Cranberries are prepared by naturally infusing cane sugar into premium whole or sliced Cranberries until a specified brix level is reached. The infused berries are then dried using a gentle drying technique that locks in the high nutritional contents and lightly sprayed with sunflower oil to prevent clumping. No preservatives, colouring or flavouring are added. The product is processed and packed in accordance with Good Manufacturing Practices.