July 31, 2020, Washington, D.C. – The U.S. Senate has passed a resolution designating July 2020 as National Blueberry Month, recognizing the contributions of the U.S. blueberry industry and acknowledging that purchasing blueberries supports farmers, jobs and the economy. The resolution echoes a proclamation from U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue in March.
Senate resolution (S.Res. 656) was sponsored by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and co-sponsored by senators Patty Murray (D-WA), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), David Perdue (R-GA) Angus King Jr. (I-ME), Susan Collins (R-ME) and Kelly Loeffler (R-GA). The resolution recognizes that highbush and wild blueberries have an annual economic impact of $4,700,000,000; a harvested area estimated at over 140,000 acres; are produced in 48 states by more than 15,000 farms and their families; and that highbush blueberry production in the U.S. has continually increased, with particular growth in the past two decades, to reach a harvest of 700,000,000 pounds in 2019. It also points to the research-based health benefits of blueberries.
NABC members met with lawmakers in Washington, D.C., in March.
Last spring, members of the North American Blueberry Council (NABC) traveled to Washington, D.C., to encourage lawmakers to support blueberries by signing onto the resolution that reflects the incredible growth, value and impact the blueberry industry has on the economy and communities.
Over 130 participants met with their senators and representatives to share NABC’s policy priorities and help raise the profile of the health benefits blueberries provide, as well as the economic impact blueberry growers have in their communities and the U.S. economy. These efforts influenced the Senate resolution passed yesterday .
“Blueberry growers and others connected to the industry are very appreciative to have their life’s work recognized and celebrated during National Blueberry Month,” said NABC Chair Ken Patterson. “July continues to be our peak season, and this resolution helps draw attention to the important economic and health benefits of blueberries. We’re grateful to the senators who are helping us highlight our industry with this timely resolution.”