Nov 4, 2015

New Report Equates Dried Fruits and Fresh Fruits

Sep 20, 2012


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California leads the nation in dried fruit production with the collective raisin, dried plum, dried fig and date industries comprising nearly $930 million in total value*. In late 2008, these four industries came together to form the non-profit California Dried Fruit Coalition (CDFC) with a goal of driving awareness around the nutritional value and versatility of traditional, no-sugar added dried fruit. Amid a competitive dried fruit marketplace, it is a novel approach rooted in recognition that they can accomplish more together than individually.

CDFC successes include:

  • Acceptance in the Womens' Food Package under the California Women, Infants & Children (WIC) Program
  • Actions to address the controversial decision to remove dried fruit from the federal Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program, even after successful inclusion in the pilot program
  • Introduction of an innovative, new dried fruit medley that is generating United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) purchases for school nutrition programs around the country
  • Development of future plans for addressing the opportunities and challenges of the collective California dried fruit industries

*According to the California Agricultural Statistic Review, 2010.

California Dried Fruit Facts: Deeply Rooted in the Economy

  • California accounts for nearly all of the national production of raisins, dried plums, dried figs and dates. The following counties, including Riverside, Imperial, Fresno, Sutter, Madera, Merced, Los Angeles, Tulare, Kern, Kings, Butte, Yuba, Tehama and Glenn, are the leading production areas.
  • California's 3,000 raisin growers produce about 700 million pounds of raisins, representing slightly less than 30 percent of the world's supply and all of the U.S. tonnage. The annual farm gate value for California raisins totals $590 million. California raisin growers substantially contribute to the local economy by spending nearly $384.3 million annually in the state. This spending creates a ripple effect of overall business activity projected to total nearly $631.6 million annually or more than $1.7 million each day of the year*.
  • The California dried plum industry has 800 producers and 21 processors, primarily focused in the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys. It represents 99 percent of the U.S. supply of prunes and about 50% of the world's supply of prunes. The farm-gate value of prunes in California varies from $100 million to $175 million depending upon crop size and grower prices.
  • California produces 100 percent of the nation's dried figs. California's fig growers spend more than $20.3 million annually in California. This spending creates a ripple effect of overall business activity in the state projected to total more than $33.4 million annually or nearly $91,575 each day of the year*.
  • The production and value of California dates has steadily increased over the last 10 years. From 2000-2010, production grew 62 percent and value shot up more than 58 percent.

*Data from an Economic Impact Study conducted by Dr. Dennis Tootelian, Director of the Center for Small Business at California State University, Sacramento, April 2010, on behalf of the Buy California Marketing Agreement for the "California Grown" program.