Every year our very kind neighbors invite us over to their house to pick from their enormous, 80 year-old blueberry bushes. What a treat! And this year has been exceptionally good for blueberries, with all the rain we had this spring. Gobs and gobs of giant, juicy morsels....is there anything better??
Unfortunately, it has become so popular around here to plant blueberries that the market is now flooded with them, driving the price down to only 29 cents per pound. We've heard of some small farmers around here that aren't even going to have their berries picked this year, because they can't make any money when the going wholesale price is that meager.
It's amazing to think of what most people pay for blueberries in the store- a lot more than the current wholesale price, that's for sure. So who is all that profit going to? Unfortunately, not the farmers, who do all the work and take on all of the risk. And even more unfortunately, current market prices are hardest on the small family farms, who simply cannot compete with the larger corporate agribusinesses.
So if you are looking to eat some tasty blueberries this summer, why not go straight to the source? Support your local farmers by shopping at Farmer's Market, where farmers get a fair price and nearly all of the profit (which they rightly deserve- farming can be brutally tough work), or find a local U-Pick farm and take the family for a fun day of berry picking (and eating!). It's one of the best way to get super fresh produce (which you just can't get in the grocery store) while helping small farmers survive.