Cranberry Facts

The facts please - nothing but the cranberry facts! Cranberries are a unique North American berry, found naturally no where else in the world. They have unique growing requirements that seem to only be met in a number of regions if Canada and the United States.

Growing up in a distinctly European household, cranberries aren't something I saw allot of (I don't remember a turkey dinner until I was in my teens). However, I think that I might have made up for lost time. Cranberries are delicious, and they're not just for turkey dinner any more! Dried in salads and cookies, fresh or frozen baked in muffins and breads, and the juice by itself or as part of a refreshing punch.

Interesting Cranberry Facts

Cranberries are one of three berries unique to North America - the other two are blueberries and the concord grape.

Cranberries have been called 'bounceberries' because the bounce when dropped if they are fresh.

They contain a natural preservative - benzoic acid.

Although we commonly believe that cranberries may have been eaten at the first Thanksgiving, the first documented serving of cranberry sauce appears to be during the U.S.civil war, when General Ulysses S Grant ordered it served to the troops in 1864 during the seige of Petersburg.

Known cranberry history started with the first nations people. Their medicine men used cranberries to make a poultice to draw infections from arrow wounds. Since then, we have learned allot more about cranberry juice benefits. The juice of cranberries makes a great dye - and was used for it's bright red color by native North Americans.

American seamen ate cranberries to prevent scurvy in that same way that British seaman used limes. There are other benefits of cranberries due to their nutritional content. Cranberry vines are able to produce for over 100 years if the plants remain undamaged.

Cranes, bears and cows are among the animals that love cranberries.

One of the little known facts about cranberries is that they don't grow in the water. They grow on vines that run along the ground in sandy bogs and marshes. Most cranberry bogs are flooded at harvest time, and the cranberries, which have an air pocket, float to the top. Some bogs can't be flooded though, and cranberries there are harvested using machines that strip them from the vines.

Just like vineyards, cranberry growers tend to be families, and the farms pass from generation to generation.

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Cranberry Facts