Shopping Discussion

As a Western Canadian, why is everyone seemingly so obsessive with Ontario peaches?

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  • Aug 21st, 2021 9:04 pm
Deal Fanatic
May 25, 2009
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Toronto
zod wrote: If I had my little way, I'd eat peaches every day...
This is the Teaches of Peaches

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Jul 7, 2017
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Logistics. Peaches are very soft, tender fruit that don't travel well., and since most here are from Ontario, that's the supply to the biggest. Have to be picked before they are ripe so they can travel, and they'll never develop the flavour and sweetness of a tree-ripen peach. Longer the travel, the less ripe they have to be. Even in my corner of B.C., the peaches we get here don;t have the sweetness and flavour of those you buy at the orchard in south central B.C. Some go there just to be able to buy ripe fruit.

As for U.S. peaches, Georgia is a big grower but most of the peaches from there that I've encountered are close to rock hard and will never ripen (almost like many avocados and pineapples and other fruit).
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
Deal Fanatic
May 25, 2009
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Toronto
thriftshopper wrote: Logistics. Peaches are very soft, tender fruit that don't travel well., and since most here are from Ontario, that's the supply to the biggest. Have to be picked before they are ripe so they can travel, and they'll never develop the flavour and sweetness of a tree-ripen peach. Longer the travel, the less ripe they have to be. Even in my corner of B.C., the peaches we get here don;t have the sweetness and flavour of those you buy at the orchard in south central B.C. Some go there just to be able to buy ripe fruit.

As for U.S. peaches, Georgia is a big grower but most of the peaches from there that I've encountered are close to rock hard and will never ripen (almost like many avocados and pineapples and other fruit).
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Jul 7, 2017
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lecale wrote: Both Canadian and US peaches are picked hard for shipping, and all you need to do to have a ripe & juicy peach is to wait & let it sit a couple days. Picking hard has no bearing on how sweet the peach ends up being. It either is or it is not.
Not in my experience. The only fruit that appears to ripen well or actually better off the tree is the pear.
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
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Jul 7, 2017
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adamtheman wrote: There's a certain percentage of the population that spends an inordinate amount of time procuring certain types of foods (farmer's market, organic, non-GMO, etc). It isn't anything new. I grew up hearing the same thing in BC about "Chilliwack Corn". People would drive 2 hours round trip to buy corn in Chilliwack because, you know, grocery store corn was garbage (even though it likely came from Chilliwack?). And the ONLY way to eat corn was if you bought it from an old truck on the side of a dirt road off some farm in Chilliwack. That myth is still well and alive today. I think they now put little stickers on the corn in some grocery stores saying "This corn is from Chilliwack". But people still drive to Chilliwack. I would really love to see a double blind test done on some of these people.
Supposedly it is freshness, as corn that is chilled supposedly loses its sweetness as the sugars start converting to starch faster. Supermarket corn can be good if it gets to the shelf fast and isn't refrigerated.
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
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Dec 3, 2004
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thriftshopper wrote: Supposedly it is freshness, as corn that is chilled supposedly loses its sweetness as the sugars start converting to starch faster. Supermarket corn can be good if it gets to the shelf fast and isn't refrigerated.
I don't doubt that, but then... it freshness is what it is all about, that means you must eat all the corn you buy pretty quick, within the same day. So you're driving 2 hours round trip to Chiliwack for maybe a dozen things of corn. Not when gas is $1.70 a liter.
Deal Addict
Mar 26, 2005
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St Clements, MB
A bigger question is: "how far west are milk bags available?"
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Mar 21, 2002
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Here in Manitoba I always look forward to Ontario peaches. They're only available for a very brief period, maybe a couple weeks, at places like my Sobeys but I've always found them better than the BC ones. Admittedly the Ontario ones are more mature and closer to being edible whereas the BC ones are rock hard and require a much longer wait and that's a factor in my preference but the Ontario ones simply seem juicier and better tasting.
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Oct 24, 2010
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Ottawa
lecale wrote: Both Canadian and US peaches are picked hard for shipping, and all you need to do to have a ripe & juicy peach is to wait & let it sit a couple days. Picking hard has no bearing on how sweet the peach ends up being. It either is or it is not.
I'm not sure where you get this from. It's a biological fact that a peach that's ripe when it's picked is going to have more sugar than a peach that's picked hard.

The longer a piece of fruit stays on the tree, the more sugar it produces. The more sugar produced, the sweeter the fruit.

The tree ripened peaches I purchase from local Ontario orchards are far superior to the picked-hard Ontario peaches I purchase from the grocery store. There's really no comparison.
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Jan 10, 2009
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Boom and Bust Calgar…
PointsHubby wrote: Having lived all over Canada … I agree with most of what you say …
Except for blueberries

And I think most folks in Quebec and the Atlantic Provinces would agree with me
As they are THE WORLDS LARGEST PROVIDER OF WILD BLUEBERRIES
Heck the Blueberry is even officially registered as a Provincial Symbol in Nova Scotia !

Now … you want to talk Saskatoon Berries / Serviceberries …
A close relative to the blueberry
And often confused with the blueberry by non locals
But BIGGER than a blueberry

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amelanchier_alnifolia

Then I agree …
Saskatoon Berries from Western Canada
Can run circles around those grown in the Western USA
Probably cuz of our cooler climate

And many blueberry lovers cannot get enough Saskatoon Berries
Cuz it’s like blueberries on steroids
With their bigger size
More sweet goodness in every bowl
I have no idea what on earth you were picking, but they weren't saskatoon berries.
Deal Fanatic
Jan 31, 2007
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Richmond Hill
Because they are good.
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Bright side of RFD: Often find good deal
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Sr. Member
Dec 15, 2017
885 posts
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as an albertan who has visited peachland in BC, I've pretty much given up eating peaches. The ones we get in grocery stores or farmers markets from the Okanagan are the worst grade probably marked "for domestic sale". Every peach I ate from farms in BC were the size of large grape fruit, juicy, delicious. The garbage we get in stores here are small apple sized and not even worth eating.
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Nov 24, 2013
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GTA
I didn't even know that Ontario peaches were a thing.
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Jul 7, 2017
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cslusarc wrote: A bigger question is: "how far west are milk bags available?"
All the way to B.C. in the past (at least early '80s), though I haven't noticed any in the past 21 years (was out of country for the decade before that).
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
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Jul 7, 2017
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lecale wrote: Both Canadian and US peaches are picked hard for shipping, and all you need to do to have a ripe & juicy peach is to wait & let it sit a couple days. Picking hard has no bearing on how sweet the peach ends up being. It either is or it is not.
https://www.canr.msu.edu/news/monitorin ... e_ripening
Fruit left on the tree will generally continue to develop sugar and reduce acidity. Fruit picked late will have poorer storage characteristics. Once a peach or nectarine is picked, the sugar content does not increase significantly, but the acidity will decrease. Sugar content is very important to eating satisfaction – peaches testing below 11° brix usually are not satisfying to consumers. Some varieties will reach 14° brix or more.
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
Deal Addict
Jan 10, 2009
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miningminer wrote: as an albertan who has visited peachland in BC, I've pretty much given up eating peaches. The ones we get in grocery stores or farmers markets from the Okanagan are the worst grade probably marked "for domestic sale". Every peach I ate from farms in BC were the size of large grape fruit, juicy, delicious. The garbage we get in stores here are small apple sized and not even worth eating.
Eh, I've found them to be very good lots of times.

U-pick in BC though can't be beat. Cheap and amazing.
Sr. Member
Dec 15, 2017
885 posts
1037 upvotes
lecale wrote: Both Canadian and US peaches are picked hard for shipping, and all you need to do to have a ripe & juicy peach is to wait & let it sit a couple days. Picking hard has no bearing on how sweet the peach ends up being. It either is or it is not.
no that's not true for peaches, they do not ripen once picked. They will soften but not sweeten and then they will rotten.
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Deal Guru
Nov 15, 2008
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miningminer wrote: no that's not true for peaches, they do not ripen once picked. They will soften but not sweeten and then they will rotten.
That is correct, just as I said.
Sr. Member
Dec 15, 2017
885 posts
1037 upvotes
lecale wrote: That is correct, just as I said.
I don't understand what you are saying actually. A ripe peach to me is one that is sweet and juicy. A soft but not sweet peach is not ripe to me. I can soften a hard peach in a few seconds against my countertop.
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