Cherries are an iconic Michigan food. Michigan cherries fall into two general categories: tart and sweet. Nearly all (98%) of the tart cherries grown in the U.S. are one variety, Montmorency, and they are primarily processed by drying, freezing or canning. Michigan also produces sweet cherries, which are generally consumed fresh, though some are frozen or canned.
- Michigan is the top producer of tart cherries in the United States with about three-fourths of the country’s total production.
- Tart cherries have anti-inflammatory properties from antioxidant compounds known as anthocyanins.
- It takes 6–8 pounds of fresh cherries to make one pound of dried cherries.
- Keep frozen cherries at 0°F or below until ready to use.
- Cherry trees bear fruit for 25 years or more.