Cheery Cupid, Cheery Nebula and Cheery Chap are the latest additions to the range

IFG cherries

Cheery Cupid is a heart shaped fruit with a sweet-tart taste

International Fruit Genetics (IFG) has launched three new trademark names for its growing Cheery Cherry line. Cheery Cupid, Cheery Nebula and Cheery Chap join Cheery Moon, Cheery Glow and the other cherries that make up the range.

Cheery Cupid, patented as IFG Cher-ten, is an early heart-shaped fruit with a sweet-tart taste which IFG said is performing “exceptionally well in all test locations”. The first commercial volumes from Spain and Chile will come on stream this year, with cherries from California available in 2024.

Cheery Nebula, patented as IFG Cher-eight, is a big round cherry with a long green stem and intense taste comes early in the harvest window with a low chill requirement of less than 300 chill hours.

Completing the trio is Cheery Chap, patented as IFG Cher-nine, another early season cherry with intense colour and taste and a chill requirement of less than 300 chill hours.

The new cherries are being grown in California, Spain, Chile, Australia, and South Africa.

IFG’s low-chill cherries are all early harvest, therefore providing the make-or-break experience that will entice the public to return for future purchases.

“IFG is devoted to revolutionising cherries as we know them – we are changing up the cherry game to Cherry 2.0 in fact,” said Alwyn van Jaarsveld, the company’s international commercial cherry manager.

“Our committed cherry team works with the latest cutting-edge breeding developments, allowing us to offer an exceptional level of expertise and service to our licensees and ultimately, consumers.

“Our programme develops varieties that are early harvests with low to high chill requirements, allowing our delicious line of cherries to be adaptable to more regions around the world, expanding global cherry production. This allows us to ensure our cherries are crunchy and sweet, with great flavour, year-round.”

Antonia Sánchez-Labbé, international technical manager cherries/country manager cherries, North America, commented: “Traditionally, there are many chill requirements to grow a great cherry – but IFG is changing that with our early and ‘low chill’ cherry varieties”.

“Until now, most cherry trees have required 800-1,000 chill hours of temperatures below 45°F (7.2°C). IFG has created varieties of cherries that need less than half that much.

“Additionally, IFG selects very specifically for our breeding programme – not only do we use modern technologies to ensure that the genetic material used in our breeding programme is exactly what we are looking for, but we also grow the trees in a typically harsh environment to weed out the weaker progeny and ensure robust, hardy varieties that are grower-friendly and can withstand the rigoru of warm, dry summers while still producing a good crop.”

According to IFG, all its varieties are non-GMO and are tested to maintain quality over weeks of storage to ensure the ability to travel well to both domestic and foreign markets and still provide a good eating experience.