Long winter, rainy spring delay strawberry harvest but farmers say fruit is as sweet as ever

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Quebec’s strawberry harvest came in later than normal this year but farmers are saying better late than never.

“We started 15 days later than normal, but now we have started,” said Louis Gosselin, whose farm has been in the family for seven generations.

Gosselin said the two-week delay is highly unusual and hasn’t seen anything similar in a decade. He blamed the unusually long winter and cold, rainy spring. But there is a silver lining – he added that the heavy snow that lingered on the plants protected them by acting as a layer of insulation against the cold.

“We hope to have a very good season with strawberries, the fruit quality will be very interesting,” he said. “We’re waiting for the sunshine days and nice weather to help everybody.”

Strawberries from Ile D’Orleans have garnered enough reputation that Australian Joe Fairclough had heard about them.

“We’re just touring around, looking for things to do and we heard about the island and we heard that there are a number of things here that are worth looking at,” she said. “We’d heard about their magnificent strawberries and I can’t resist a good strawberry.”