Montreal, May 17, 2016 – For the second consecutive year, IGA, in collaboration with the Association des producteurs de fraises et framboises du Québec, is inviting Quebecers to predict when the first Quebec strawberries will hit store shelves. The contest takes place from Monday, May 2 until Sunday, June 5 at http://fraisesetframboisesduquebec.com/concours/iga/, and 10 lucky winners will receive a $50 IGA gift card so they can enjoy local strawberries all season long, from June until October!
Arriving slowly but surely
Late frosts, rain accumulation, and low temperatures influence the growing season for local strawberries, making it difficult to know exactly when they'll arrive in store. There is a transition period during which the quantity of local strawberries produced is insufficient to meet general demand. Once Quebec strawberry production is running at full capacity, customers will find mainly, and often exclusively, Quebec strawberries in IGA stores.
Delicious local strawberries are delicate and well worth the wait. "With new production techniques and a helping hand from Mother Nature, Quebec strawberries are now available in early June in the Greater Montreal area, Montérégie, the Laurentians, and Outaouais," explains Yourianne Plante, Executive Director of the Association des producteurs de fraises et framboises du Québec. "By mid-June, their arrival will extend east to Lanaudière, Mauricie, Estrie, Chaudière-Appalaches, and Quebec City. By Canada Day, with strawberry picking season in full swing, they’ll be in abundant supply in all regions of Quebec including Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, the lower Saint-Lawrence, Abitibi-Témiscamingue, and Gaspésie.
Celebrating local products every day
This initiative is directly related to The Joy of Eating Better movement that's now celebrating its second year and encouraging Quebecers to cook differently and more often, discover local and international flavours, eat healthier, and make responsible choices – including eating local products. The IGA banner works closely with Quebec strawberry producers, buying as many local strawberries as they can throughout the season in order to offer consumers this excellent fruit. "IGA and its grocers have always been deeply committed to promoting local products, to supporting local producers, and to offering a variety of locally-produced, quality products. We've been supporting Quebec producers and entrepreneurs for years!" points out Marie-Noëlle Cano, Director of Communications and Sustainable Development at Sobeys Québec. "And we want to continue being Quebecers' go-to destination for local products," she concludes.
IGA is the largest group of independent grocers in Canada and its presence in Quebec dates to 1953. In May 2014, IGA grocers launched The Joy of Eating Better initiative that aims to help Quebecers cook differently and more often, discover local and international flavours, eat healthier, and make responsible choices. In April 2016, they decided to make this movement even more accessible to everyone, all the time, thanks to a permanent price drop on thousands of grocery products. The IGA banner includes over 300 stores. Moreover, IGA is the only group of food retailers to offer consumers the opportunity to accumulate AIR MILES® reward miles.
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About Fraîches du Québec
The largest producer of strawberries in Canada and the third largest in North America, Quebec has close to 500 businesses assembled under the Association des producteurs de fraises et framboises du Québec. Whether you are buying your berries at the grocery store or a farm kiosk, or perhaps picking your own, Les Fraîches du Québec label is a guarantee of freshness and exceptional flavour that unites strawberry and raspberry producers from all regions across Quebec!
Find a producer at www.lesfraichesduquebec.com
For further information:
514-324-1010, ext. 2158