Food & Drink

No wrinkles in this harvest — Sacramento’s prune crop forecast is way up

Derby Orchards has big expectations for this year's prune crop

The Sacramento Valley is a world leader in prunes, and Derby Orchards tells us what we can expect out of the region's prune harvest this year.
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The Sacramento Valley is a world leader in prunes, and Derby Orchards tells us what we can expect out of the region's prune harvest this year.

It’s mid-August and prune orchards being harvested—a job that usually takes about 30 days.

The 2017 California dried plum, or prune, crop is forcast to be 105,000 tons, up 106 percent over last year’s 51,000-ton production, according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

The 2017 dried plum season is estimated to be significantly better than last year because beneficial conditions prevailed throughout the bloom. Growers expect a heavier crop with good fruit size, the CDFA said.

California is the world’s largest producer of dried plums, supplying approximately 40 percent of the world’s supply and 99 percent of the U.S. supply.

A lot of nutrition is packed into one small piece of the dried fruit. One dried plum contains about 20 calories. That’s 67 calories per ounce of pitted prunes or 418 calories per cup. Prunes are a good source of dietary fiber while also rich in vitamin K, vitamin A, numerous antioxidants and potassium, which may help prevent hypertension and stroke. Their high fiber content helps make them a natural laxative.

David Caraccio: 916-321-1125, @DavidCaraccio

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