Last weekend we went to the Fort Langley Cranberry Festival in Fort Langley BC. This was one of the trips that was not on a motorcycle but still fun. From Aldergrove, Fort Langley is about a 15-20 minute drive, depending on the traffic lights of course.
This festival is the only place people can buy cranberries from local producers as all the rest of the cranberries are sold to Ocean Spray. The festival started at 10 and by 12 they had sold out all of the cranberries. My dad and brother bought twenty lbs to make wine and beer with. The two of them are like mad scientists when it comes to wine and beer.
After wandering around to the various booths at the festival we went over to the Fort Wine Company to go on a bog tour and of course to sample some wine. The “bog tour” van dropped us off at the bog and told us they would be back in 20 minutes to pick us up. We were expecting at the very least to have someone greet us and show us around a bit. Apparently we were expecting too much. The guys that were harvesting the berries were on their lunch break and probably thought it was pretty funny that a bunch of stupid tourists were just wondering around the bogs. We took a few pictures and got back in the van and went to sample some wine.
The Fraser Valley is the largest producer of cranberries in Canada and the third largest in North America.
Cranberries are BC’s largest berry crop in both volume and sales.
It takes 2 to 3 years for a plant to start producing fruit and 5 to 6 to be full bearing.
95% of Cranberries grown in BC are produced for juicing by Ocean Spray.
Berries that are to be used in the fresh market are harvested dry. A mechanical harvester ‘combs’ the berries off the vines.
Cranberries were havested and sold at Fort Langley as early at the 1830’s. Some bogs in the area are still in production after over 100 years.
Ocean Spray, a Massachusetts based company, markets nearly all the cranberries grown in North America.- Ministry of Agriculture and Fort Langley National Historic Site of Canada