In Finland, every other person goes berry-picking. The Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) assists berry-pickers by issuing several yield forecasts during the summer and autumn.
Luke’s wild berry yield forecasts are based on a network of experimental plots in 150–200 forests and peatlands across Finland. In the experimental plot, the berry flowers, unripe berries and ripe berries are counted. Information on the results is issued several times during the berry season.
A number of factors affect the wild berry yield, such as the weather conditions of the previous year, snow cover, the weather and wind conditions of the current summer, and the success of pollination. Forest management activities also affect wild berry yield.
2015 was a good year for wild berries, and a record of 64.5 million kilos of wild berries were picked from our forests and peatlands. About 20% of this was collected by pickers that came from outside Finland. The commercial value of the wild berries rose to more than MEUR 120.
The yield forecasts are used by many people who are also interested in the effects of berries on health
Picking wild berries is an important form of using forests in Finland. Berry-picking has commercial benefits and, according to a study, it is also one of the most popular forms of outdoor recreation after walking and swimming in natural waters. Wild berry yield forecasts provide information for domestic berry-pickers, companies involved in manufacturing and refining berry products and, in recent years, operators bringing berry-pickers to Finland from other countries.
NEW BROCHURE: Natural products to boost the North Karelian bioeconomy
The new colourful 12-page brochure provides information about the commercial use of natural products, the berry and mushroom markets, the market for natural products, picking natural products on the European level, everyman’s rights, crop forecasts, etc.
Picture on top of the page: Merja Lindroos, Luke.