FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FRIDAY, JUNE 20, 2014
Dexter Hill, marketing specialist
NCDA&CS Marketing Division
N.C. peach season on tap to be a good one
Events planned across the state
RALEIGH – Homemade ice cream, cobbler or sliced fresh, no matter what way you enjoy peaches, this season is looking good for the crop. While an unusually cold winter did impact the crop, mid- to late-season peaches will be plentiful in much of the state.
“North Carolina growers produce 70 varieties, each with its own unique flavor,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “Peach season typically runs from late May to August, so consumers have time to sample many different varieties this summer.”
Dexter Hill, marketing specialist with the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, offers these tips for choosing, and eating, a great tasting peach:
- Check the undertone, near the stem, to determine ripeness. A green undertone indicates peaches that are not fully ripe.
- Many peaches have a “blush,” which is a rosy red color that, depending on the variety, may be minor or almost cover the entire peach. The color and extent of the blush is more a characteristic of the variety, and not a determining factor of ripeness, Hill said.
- The peach should be firm and have a good fragrance.
- For best quality, keep peaches at room temperature, Hill said. They can be held for a short time in a refrigerator, but refrigeration does not add to the taste or quality of the fruit.
- Before eating a peach, wash and peel it, then remove the pit. A simple way to peel a peach is to dip it in boiling water for 30 seconds and then dip it in cold water, Hill said. The peel should slide off easily afterwards.
Mark your calendar for the Peach Festival in Candor on July 19. It will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and include a peach cooking contest, 5K run, parade and plenty of peach samples, desserts and ice cream. More information about the peach festival can be found online at www.townofcandornc.com.
Peach Day will be celebrated at the Charlotte Regional Farmers Market on June 27, the State Farmers Market in Raleigh on July 10, and the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market in Colfax on July 18. Market events will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and include peach recipe contests and free samples and recipes. More information about peach days at the markets can be found of their websites.