The figures were released on Monday 1 June to mark the beginning of National Strawberry Week, which takes place until Sunday 7 June.
Commenting on the above figures, Mike Neary, Manager of Horticulture in Bord Bia said the growth in consumption among the 25-34 year age group is important, "as they often tend to have young children, which sets the industry up well for the future. Strawberries are an increasingly popular choice among consumers as a tasty, low calorie, convenient snack.”
National Strawberry Week, organised by the Irish Soft Fruit Growers Association in conjunction with Bord Bia and the IFA, aims to encourage consumers to enjoy more strawberries as the summer season approaches and Irish crops are at peak production.
Gary McCarthy of the Irish Soft Fruit Growers Association added that "fresh fruit and vegetables are a vital part of a healthy diet. The cold start to the year means the strawberry crop is a little later, but slow grown and sweeter than ever. We expect the Irish crop this year to total 5000 tonnes, in an industry that employs over a 1000 people.”
To help celebrate National Strawberry Week bestinseason.ie have prepared some special strawberry themed recipes. Here’s one for you to try at home:
Strawberry, Ginger and Lime Smoothie
Ingredients:15 large strawberries, washed and hulled250ml natural yoghurt5 ice cubes2 – 3 pieces crystalised ginger, roughly chopped Zest of ½ lime
To decorate the glasses Zest of ½ lime1 tbsp caster sugar
Blend the strawberries, natural yoghurt, ice and ginger until smooth.
To decorate the glass, combine the zest and caster together and dip the rim of the glass into a little water and then into the lime sugar.
Pour the smoothie into the glass.