We are heartbroken to report that raspberry season has abruptly been cut short for now. After countless hours of hard work all year, the bushes are loaded with big delicious berries, but the entire crop has been devastated by a foreign invasive species, despite our best efforts to control them. We're not alone either. You'll likely notice a lack of local raspberries everywhere.Posted by Millar Berry Farms on Thursday, July 20, 2017
Spotted Wing Drosophila. You've probably never heard of it, and if you saw it you'd likely think it's just a regular fruit fly. But it's not. Whereas regular fruit flies feed on overripe fruit, SWD lays eggs in ripening fruit. By the time the fruit is ready to harvest, it has "collapsed" and is unmarketable. Native to Asia, the SWD first appeared on Canada's west coast circa 2009. Since then, it has been spreading rapidly. Initially, we only noticed damage in our latest raspberry varieties. Worsening every year, this summer we were even seeing damage in our midseason strawberries. While not too severe there, there's about 90% or more destruction of our raspberries, despite weekly applications of sprays registered for the pest.
Our market will remain open with local produce (and our strawberries for another day or 2).
We will reassess our fields in a week or so.
We're hoping that our fall strawberries and raspberries will still be okay.
Thank you for understanding, and we hope we'll still see you out at our market to get your fill of fresh local produce!