Schools across the nation receive frozen blueberries from USDA Foods programs. This is an important way for the blueberry industry to reach the customers of tomorrow. What happens once the product reaches the state warehouses? A good portion of the goods enter what is called the commodity processing channel.
- Food processors in various states work are registered and accepted by as commodity processors. That is — they have the ability to receive truckloads of various commodities such as frozen blueberries, produce finished products. Most importantly, they have the ability to account for the dispersion into the school systems where they sell. It is not an easy task — but it must be worthwhile as some of the leading food processing companies in the nation are involved.
- School districts purchase very reasonably priced finished goods such as muffins, fruit pies, and the latest — fruit cups and frozen ice bars!
It is a win win situation. In most cases the companies involved in the school processing also purchase frozen blueberries from packers for schools as well. Here are a few new blueberry items featured at the recent School Nutrition Association (SNA) annual meeting in San Antonio: