History and origin

Chokeberry comes from the North American east coast. Its wild form grows in the territories of Canada and the USA. The name has not gained popularity for the plant, which remains a wild shrub in its natural habitat.

According to numerous sources, chokeberry was first imported from North America to the Old World at the beginning of 19th century, to botanical gardens of Russia. Due to the mentioned adaptive possibilities in harsh conditions it began to be cultivated on thousands of hectares, especially in places characterised of an extremely harsh climate. Over the years chokeberry has reached many countries. It has not reached Poland, though, until the 1970s. It has had its ups and downs in our country. In the second half of 1980s, as a result of some absurd (nonsense) statements made by several employees of the Forest Research Institute, chokeberry fruit was paradoxically claimed cancerogenic. Fortunately, later scrupulous analyses of its fruit had to have been conducted, with particular focus on the content of substances harmful for the human health.

The studies revealed chokeberry fruits have a high alimentary virtue and lack substances harmful for the human health – even if grown in particularly adverse conditions, e.g., near busy roads.

The results obtained in Poland were finally confirmed by EU laboratories. Another blow for the development of the chokeberry business was the reorganisation of a certain chokeberry fruit processing plant, one of the leading consumers in Poland. The gap in the processing market caused the foundation of new processing plants in the place of old ones.

As a consequence of these two events, many planters decided to give up chokeberry cultivation. This process has not been stopped for the next several years, when the interest in chokeberry and its exceptional values began to rise again.

Useful links

Wikipedia Ekogwarancja Ministerstwo Rolnictwa Państwowa Inspekcja Ochrony Roślin i Nasiennictwa Narodowy Fundusz Ochrony Środowiska i Gospodarki Wodnej Agencja Rynku Rolnego ARiMR - Agencja Restrukturyzacji i Modernizacji Rolnictwa Krajowa Rada Izb Rolniczych Instytut Ekonomiki Rolnictwa i Gospodarki Żywnościowej - Państwowy Instytut Badawczy

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