It was a lucky (and antioxidant-filled) day for some beachgoers Thursday as the New Jersey Department of Agriculture celebrated National Blueberry Day with special deliveries of free blueberries to the Shore towns of Wildwood, Atlantic City and Seaside Heights.
New Jerseyans give a lot of love to our pizza and bagels. And the Department of Agriculture wants use to share that with the blueberry, the so-called King of the Antioxidants. For starters, it’s our official state fruit. And why wouldn’t it be? The cultivated blueberry was first grown in New Jersey in 1916 by Elizabeth Coleman White in Burlington County.
The succulent berries were the #1 crop in New Jersey in 2020, with a production value of $85 million and the state annually ranks in the top six among states for blueberry production. Last year, farmers in the Garden State harvested 46 million pounds of blueberries on 9,300 acres.
Blueberry season here begins in June and lasts through the end of July. Go to findjerseyfresh.com to find fresh blueberries near you and recipes.