Chicago-based Hazel Technologies Inc. has launched Hazel Cherry, a new post-harvest technology for fresh cherries.
Cherry packers in the Pacific Northwest successfully piloted the technology last season, according to a news release. The technology consists of a quarter-sized biodegradable and food-safe packaging insert that is placed in the box during packing, and a month-long study by Cornell University found that Hazel Cherry helps protect stem quality, reduce pitting, and reduce probability of decay in commercial fresh cherry varieties, according to the release.
“We are constantly looking for the newest technologies to help ensure the highest level of quality,” Deidre Baumgarten, manager of The Dalles, Ore.-based Polehn Farms, said in the release. “In 2018, we used Hazel Cherry on our export grade cherries and had excellent quality arrivals in Asia.”
Cornell University Professor Chris Watkins said in the release that the Hazel Cherry technology resulted in better stem quality, lower decay, and lower rate of pitting in the Royal cherry variety compared with the control group.
More trial studies are anticipated for the 2019 season, according to the release.
“We are grateful for the partnership of our trial partners in the Pacific Northwest and look forward to continued adaption and success for packers and retailers using Hazel Cherry in their supply chains,” Aidan Mouat, CEO and co-founder of Hazel Technologies, Inc., said in the release.