When it comes to our love of raspberries, our passion is second to none. And now we have the numbers to prove it.
Data gathered by the Nielsen Company — the folks best known for measuring TV audiences — shows Twin Cities berry-fanatics enjoying 132 percent more fresh raspberries per household than the national average. That makes us the raspberry-eating capital of the country. (We are home to the Hopkins Raspberry Festival, after all. It’s now in its 83rd year and coming up on July 8.)
The numbers for other berries aren’t too shabby, either. The data, released by the berry distribution company Driscoll’s, puts the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area at No. 5 in strawberry consumption, sixth for blackberries and 10th for blueberries.
When all the berries are mixed together, the Twin Cities is third in overall consumption, trailing Boston and the Hartford-New Haven area in Connecticut. Milwaukee is the only other Midwestern city to be recognized. It finished fifth on the raspberry list but was a no-show on all the others.
Driscoll’s has put together a nationwide #BerryTogether campaign that, in honor of our berry prowess, started in the Twin Cities, said Frances Dillard, the company’s director of marketing. The campaign kicked off in June with a berry picnic in Mears Park in St. Paul. Dillard said that the metro area’s top-ranked park system made it a natural choice for an event saluting the top-rated berry eaters.
Driscoll’s also is hosting a Minnesota-based #BerryTogether sweepstakes, with a top prize of a four-night stay at Madden’s on Gull Lake and a one-year supply of berries — a Twin Cities-sized supply, we hope, not one of those wimpy Milwaukee stashes.
Information for the giveaway can be found on at driscolls.com/berrytogether/mn-sweeps. Registration continues through Aug. 31,