Argentine cherries

Several of the world’s leading cherry producing countries have agreed to form the first global organisation to promote the consumption of the red fruit.

The announcement was made at last week’s Fruit Logistica trade fair following a meeting of representatives from the industries in Chile, South Africa, Hungary, Argentina, Greece, Turkey, Spain, the US and the UK.

The organisation has two key objectives: to facilitate consumption and to exchange information.

One of the first projects it will undertake is to commission research into the fruit’s nutritional properties with a view to incorporating approved health claims in future marketing campaigns.

Cherries are one of the top performers in the fruit category. Global trade has doubled in volume and tripled in value in the last ten years, and is worth more than US$2.5bn a year according to figures from Fresh4Cast.

Within the whole fruit and nut category, cherries have climbed from 24th to 15th position by value during the past decade.

The new organisation is due to hold its next meeting at April’s Global Cherry Summit to define future steps and objectives.