THE FRUIT OF THE 21ST CENTURY
Meristec proposes the contemporary Spanish cultivation with the greatest nutritional success: the blueberry (ericaceas corymbosum). A fruit that comes from shrubby plants that, along with raspberries, blackberries and currants, is included in the forest fruits group. With tannins, organic acids and hypoglycemic substances, this berry has become the go-to choice to treat mild inflammations of the buccopharyngeal mucosa, in addition to being low in calories, high in fibre and containing antioxidants.
Research into the different species of this fruit got underway in 1906 in the United States Department of Agriculture, with other universities in South America, Australia and Europe getting involved gradually over time. Today in Spain, the blueberry (vaccinium corymbosum) is the most cultivated species that, from its origins at the end of the 20th century in Cantabria, began to expand towards the province of Huelva, Galicia, Asturias and the Basque Country. It is therefore a plant that we cultivate through in-vitro processes that are resistant to winter cold, and whose fruit reaches sizes of between 7 to 12 millimetres in diameter characterized by a wide variety of nutritional properties (vitamin C, fibre, potassium, iron, calcium, anthocyanins and carotenoids).
The varieties that we work with from this shrub are LEGACY, STAR and WINDSOR.
Blueberry Legacy (vaccinium Legacy) is a vigorous, vertical and open shrub with flexible canes rated as one of the best taste varieties in USDA research trials. It requires 800 to 1000 chilling hours, maturing two or three weeks later than the Star variety. Flowering occurs early with elongated flowers which are of a pure white colour, and its berry is average in size and light blue, firm, with excellent flavour, and with a small dry scar of the stem. They are less prone to spoilage than other tall shrub varieties and have a long shelf life. Blueberries can be harvested by hand or machine, adapting to different land taxonomies.
Blueberry Star (vaccinium Star) is a vigorous and productive shrub recognized the world over. It was introduced by the University of Florida in 1996, and its plant produces high quality, large-sized berries, requiring approximately 400 cold hours. It does not require long hours of cold compared to other varieties, it has a concentrated early maturation and is much simpler when harvesting by hand.
Blueberry Windsor (vaccinum Windsor) is a vigorous shrub with thick stems and semi-extended growth. Its fruit is large (approximately 2.4 grams) with a deep-harvest scar that, although its packaging can reduce its post-harvest shelf life, it becomes the ideal selection for home fruit gardens. Its colour is similar to the Star variety, with good consistency and flavour.