European cherries, known as Prunus avium, are a delightful and cherished fruit native to Europe and parts of western Asia.
Here are some key aspects of European cherries:
Varieties: European cherries come in a variety of cultivars, each with its unique flavor profile, size, and color.
Appearance: European cherries are typically small to medium-sized fruits with a round or slightly heart-shaped appearance. It color from deep red to almost black when fully ripe.
Flavor: European cherries are prized for their sweet and juicy flesh. They have a delightful balance of sweetness and tartness that makes them perfect for eating fresh or using in various culinary applications.
Cultivation: European cherries are typically grown on deciduous trees that can reach heights of up to 30 feet (9 meters).
Culinary Uses: European cherries are incredibly versatile in the kitchen. They are enjoyed fresh as a snack, used in desserts such as cherry pies, tarts, and cobblers, and can be made into jams, preserves, and sauces. Additionally, they are used to make cherry liqueurs like Maraschino and Kirsch.
Seasonality: European cherries have a relatively short growing season, usually from late spring to early summer. They are at their peak of flavor and sweetness when harvested ripe from the tree.
European production methods:
The European Green Deal sets out how to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050. It maps a new, sustainable and inclusive growth strategy to boost the economy, improve people’s health and quality of life, care for nature, and leave no one behind.
From Farm to Fork Strategy
The Farm to Fork Strategy is at the heart of the Green Deal, aiming to make foodsystems fair, healthy, and environmentally friendly. It addresses comprehensively the challenges of sustainable food systems and recognizes the inextricable links between healthy people, healthy societies, and a healthy planet. The strategy is also central to the Commission’s agenda to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
All citizens and operators across value chains, in the EU and elsewhere, should benefit from a just transition, especially in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic downturn.
A shift to a sustainable food system can bring environmental, health, and social benefits, offer economic gains and ensure that the recovery from the crisis puts us onto a sustainable path. Ensuring a sustainable livelihood for primary producers, who still lag in terms of income, is essential for the success of the recovery and the transition.
EU legislation, based on the European Green Deal, has set as a general goal a new development strategy for the EU, with the aim of transforming it into a climate-neutral, equitable and prosperous society, which will have a modern, efficient use of resources and a competitive economy.
In particular, through the Farm-to-Fork strategy, the Union seeks to ensure adequate, economical and nutritious food, to ensure sustainable food production by substantially reducing the use of pesticides, antimicrobials and fertilizers, and to promote food consumption and healthy eating.
The proposing organizations, consistently following the priorities set regarding sustainability, are fully complied with the content and the spirit of EU legislation. The rationalization of production through the management of inputs-outputs, leads to addressing the negative consequences of over-irrigation (waste of water and energy), increased greenhouse gas emissions, improper use of fertilization and increased production costs.
Direct consequence of these practices is the reduction of the environmental footprint with the simultaneous production of high nutritional value products, which comply with national and European standards.
As summary of the above European Green Deal and Farm to Fork strategy has some very specific environmental goals like :
- Tackle climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions through the reduced use of fertilizers of natural composition and living microorganisms.
- Protect natural resources through the responsible consumption of water and with the use of fertilizers of natural composition and living microorganisms.
- Protect the soil through the reduced use of fertilizers, antimicrobials and chemical pesticides.
- Strengthen the resilience of rural areas to external factors related to climate change.
- Promote sustainable farming, precision agriculture and / or agro-ecology.
- Promote sustainable consumption.
- Contribute to sustainability through the use circular economy methods in the unit.
- Enhance biodiversity, by preventing the contamination of the surrounding soil and by preventing the destruction of the beneficial insect populations that act as natural enemies of pests, which contributes to the nutritional value of food.
European farmers and food producers have a reputation for producing a diverse range of high-quality products. Beyond the legal requirements, there are additional aspects of product quality, which are also valued by consumers, e.g. the use of traditional farming methods in production.
The primary efforts for the improvement of the food quality were entered into the Agricultural Policy of the European Union. EU legislation sets strict criteria guaranteeing the standards of all European products. Key figures on European quality policy are the Common Organization of Markets for agricultural products, the determination of common legislative frameworks of all the EU Member States to define together the specifications, the operating framework and the inspection regime, which ensure that the specifications are common to the whole European market. Cultivation and production methods meet international and European quality and safety standards.
The main objective of the European Commission’s food safety policy is to ensure a high level of protection of human health and consumer interests relating to food, taking also into account the diversity and the effective functioning of the external market. Strict EU rules were tightened in 2000 to ensure that European food is extremely safe.
EU’s integrated approach aims to ensure a high level of food safety, animal health and welfare and plant health in the European Union by taking consistent measures from farm to consumption and proper surveillance. EU authorities carefully evaluate risk and always seek the best possible scientific advice before prohibit or allow any product, ingredient, additive or genetically modified organism. This dissemination of knowledge will allow consumers to evaluate the EU products, to understand why so much emphasis on food safety is given and thus to lead them buy EU products rather than products imported from other countries.