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The haskap (Lonicera Caerulea) is a member of the honeysuckle family and is called as well: honeyberry, sweetberry and edible blue honeysuckle. The haskap berries are dark blue in colour, oval or cylindrical in shape and about one inch in length. The Russian varieties tend in general to be longer and larger than the Japanese ones. Haskap berries produce a fabulous tasting fruit that is hard to describe. Some say it tastes like a cross between a raspberry and blueberry with a hint of elderberry, but we feel that it is truly unique.  There is much demand for this fruit in Japan for the long-held belief of its nutritional benefits. Haskap has become a delicacy in Japan due to increased urbanization of traditional Haskap orchard areas. It has been proven that there are several health benefits to those who consume this berry. The Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, December, 2008 reports the following: ... L. caerulea berries seem to be a prospective source of health supporting phytochemicals, especially phenolic compounds that exhibit beneficial activities such as antiadherence, antioxidant, and chemoprotective. Thus, natural antioxidants, natural colorants, and an ingredient of functional foods based on L. caerulea berries look promising as a useful addition in the prevention of a number of chronic conditions, e.g., cancer, diabetes mellitus, tumor growth, and cardiovascular diseases. Unlike any other berries, Haskap produces fruit as early as mid-June. This makes it the first berry to hit the market. It also allows orchard growers a longer season to capture fresh market customers.  Another advantage of an early harvest is that the berries are safe from pests, which typically arrive in the heat of summer. This in itself, prevents the use of any pesticides.  Haskap is exceptionally winter hardy, plants will resist harm from temperatures as low as -47°C. Flowers can be exposed to temperatures of -10°C with no detriment to fruit set.



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