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California Grapes

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California leads the country in grape production.  Grapes are the second exported crop after almonds, including wine grapes, table grapes and raisins. Table grapes are currently coming out of the desert in Coachella, south of Palm Springs. Soon it will be too hot to grow grapes in the desert and by July 1st grapes will be moving up to Bakersfield at the southern end of the San Joaquin valley.  The San Joaquin Valley goes through the center of the state for about 450 miles and reaches from Stockton and Merced in the north down to Bakersfield in the south.   San Joaquin Valley is mostly flat land and is California’s top agricultural producing region, growing more than 250 unique crops and much of the Nation’s fruits, vegetables, and nuts. (Source. EPA United States Environmental Protection Agency)

The season out of Coachella is in full swing and Earl’s has a beautiful array of early season California table grapes. Perlette seedless grapes have a white or amber hue, which means a sweeter flavor. Flame seedless red grapes are sweet and crisp. Black seedless grapes are plump and have the perfect balance of sweet and tart. Sugarone green seedless grapes have a mild sweet taste.

As the grape season continues and the weather gets hotter we will see other varieties like the seedless Thompson green grape and seedless red Crimson grape.  There are over 70 varieties of grapes grown in California. Click here for a list of the most popular varieties.

Recent studies have found that resveratrol, an antioxidant compound found mostly in grape skins may have an effect on age related diseases such as arthritis, hearing loss and Alzheimer’s disease.

Grapes are always picked ripe and do not ripen off the vine. Look for firm grapes and stay away from soft or wrinkled grapes.  Grapes are perfect for eating out of hand or try freezing them for a fun snack on a hot day.

California Grapes- various

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