U.S. Montmorency cherries are a red hot ingredient for food and beverage producers as it’s now one of the most sought-after ingredients in a wide range of innovations. Products featuring tart cherries are up by 113% and 70% of health-conscious consumers are willing to pay a little extra for tart cherries in their food and beverages. With U.S Montmorency tart cherries dominating the food and beverage industry, here are five reasons to use tart cherries in your products.
Flavor Versatility – Consumers are seeking out sour, less sweet flavors and tart cherries tick that box as they provide the ideal sour-sweet flavor profile for savory and sweet applications. Because of their lower natural sugar content than other fruits, tart cherries have become a favorite for keto desserts and snacks.
Functional Attributes – Tart cherries are one of the few foods that offer melatonin. Emerging research supports the health benefits that tart cherries have to offer such as better sleep quality. Other studies explore how tart cherry consumption affects exercise recovery, gout attacks, arthritis symptoms, heart health, and blood pressure.
Premium Appeal – Tart cherries help elevate the eating occasion and offer a premium quality to products. Consumers are seeking premium foods for at-home meals to replace the restaurant experience. The premiumization trend is expected to continue, especially with health and wellness products.
Vibrant Color – The high concentrations of anthocyanins give tart cherries their bold, red color. Colorful ingredients are trending as consumers associate bright colors with high nutritional value. Bright produce also gives a visual interest and an Instagram-worthy appeal.
U.S. Grown – Montmorency cherries are grown in the U.S. which is important for consumers looking to support local agriculture. In fact, 85% of consumers prefer to buy a U.S. grown tart cherry over an imported cherry. Locally grown produce is associated with better quality and a lower carbon footprint compared to imported produce.
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