In September, we Celebrate Bandon Cranberries
Did you know that our home in Bandon is the center of cranberry production in Oregon? That’s right! The same coastal climate factors that make our region ideal for raising the cows and sheep that provide Face Rock Creamery with rich milk for our cheese make it ideal for growing cranberries.
We grow about 95% of Oregon’s crop on 1600 acres located in and around Bandon. Our 30 million pounds of berries account for 5% of the nation’s cranberry production. Each September our community gathers to celebrate our designation of Cranberry Capital of Oregon, crown our Cranberry Court, and eat all kinds of cranberry treats!
We believe in keeping our supply chain local, which is why our Cranberry Walnut Cheddar and Cranberry Honey Fromage Blanc is so special. We source our berries straight from a family farm located just a few miles away from us, and blend these tart gems and crisp walnuts into our smooth and creamy cheddar for a unique taste that couldn’t be more Bandon if we tried. We also have a fresh Cranberry Honey Fromage Blanc. This is the stuff that brunch dreams are made of! Add this creamy spreadable cheese to breads, muffins, and danish for a delicious upgrade.
Cranberry Walnut Cheddar is gorgeous on a cheese plate, and is fun to cook with as well. Check out our Cranberry Walnut recipes and see what inspires you!
Here is some fun trivia about cranberries for you to share the next time you serve Cranberry Walnut Cheddar:
- Cranberry plants are native to North America.
- Oregon is just one of five states in the country that grow this tart gem of a berry.
- Cranberries are grown in bogs, which are square or rectangle fields created with a berm around the perimeter.
- Despite common misconceptions, the bogs are not flooded year round. Oregon's abundant rainfall provides natural irrigation for much of the year, making these a water wise crop to grow.
- Oregon cranberries are harvested between late October and early December. This is a later harvest than other parts of the country thanks to the relatively mild climate and late frost.
- Since a longer growing season produces a deeper rich red berry, some of Bandon’s berries are sent to the east coast and be mix with the berries there to improve their color!
- Cranberry bogs are only flooded during harvest. Cranberries are harvested in water because they float! A water reel is used to dislodge the fruit from the vine, and small pockets of air in the fruit allow them to float to the top. A tool called a boom is used to herd the berries to a conveyor or pump hose Wooden or plastic “booms” are used to round up the berries, which are then skimmed up and loaded into trucks.
- Most of Bandon’s cranberries are made into juice concentrate or frozen. But a good portion of the crop is sold fresh or dried.
- Bandon cranberries are used to make craft beverages including cider and wine.
- We use them for our amazing Face Rock Cranberry Walnut Cheddar!