Could the Peach State turn into the Blueberry state? The Associated Press reports that blueberries are the most lucrative crop in the Peach State. The AP says according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture survey blueberries brought in an estimated 94 million dollars last year to growers, while peaches came in with around 30 million dollars.
Lane Southern Orchards in Fort Valley sells both of these fruits. But their blueberry crop is significantly smaller than their peaches.
"We are 100 percent in the peach business, we grow a handful of blueberries for the retail market less than half an acre whereas peaches, we are farming nearly 3,000 acres so it's really just small scale retail market type production," said Duke Lane III, Vice President of Sales at Lane Southern Orchards.
But Lane said their blueberries do sell well at their store.
"What we grow sells pretty well at our retail market so we've got a few blueberries and few blackberries we are even working on a few kiwis we are always going to have other fruits beside peaches for sale at our retail markets," said Lane. "We probably sell one pound of blueberry to every 1,000 pound of peaches. So the peaches and the peach ice cream undoubtedly the best seller."
For Jeana Brown of North Carolina, she came to Lane Southern Orchards to grab peaches, but when she saw blueberries she couldn't resist.
"You cannot go to Georgia without getting a peach," said Brown. "We didn't know that we were going to get blueberries and so we happened to see them and so we said we have to get blueberries too."
But for others at the store, Georgia will always be about peaches.
"Peaches it's a Georgia staple and I really like peach cobbler," said Jill Hartsfield of Tallahassee, FL.
"Never, never, never, never even though peaches, even though blueberries are medicinal and got a lot of nutrition peaches beats it all stands far beyond Georgia will always be known as the peach state," said Julia Williams of Miramar, FL.