SouthCoast Drought Dries Up Thanksgiving Cranberry Sauce Supply
Thanksgiving is traditionally a time for family. There is the traditional family dinner, maybe some touch football action with the family, the family political discussion, and the annual family debate over cranberry sauce.
I'm a traditionalist at heart, but I strongly dislike cranberry sauce – especially the kind that slides out of a can still holding its can shape as it wiggles into a bowl before being mashed into submission.
Of course, someone or another always brings a big family-sized serving of homemade cranberry sauce to Thanksgiving dinner – you know, the kind with the whole cranberries.
Which is best?
Blah! You can pass both types right by me and hand me the dark meat, please.
So perhaps it's with some muted joy that I share the news I learned today. The drought that parched much of Massachusetts and Rhode Island during the Summer of 2022 may have knocked the cranberry sauce off the Thanksgiving menu this year.
The New York Post reports, "Extreme drought in Massachusetts could wreak havoc on this year's Thanksgiving as the heat wave is destroying cranberry crops. That means cranberry sauce and cosmopolitans are at risk as the Northeast dry spell is threatening crops and the whole industry."
The Washington Examiner reported that "Massachusetts, which is the second largest cranberry producer in the United States, behind Wisconsin, is experiencing a critical drought in most of the state and a significant drought in other areas."
Much of the Massachusetts cranberry crop is grown right here in the southeastern part of the state, places such as Lakeville, Carver, and Wareham.
New Bedford Cable Access recently documented the cranberry harvesting process at Decas Cranberry in Carver and Lakeville.
The Executive Director of the Cape Cod Cranberry Growers' Association, Brian Wick, told Grist that "it's quite clear in talking to many growers over the past several years that this change in climate is very real and it's really starting to impact how they farm."
Grist stated that Massachusetts and Wisconsin had bad growing seasons last year as well.