Living on Cape Cod it’s hard not to be near a cranberry bog. We are fortunate enough to have one at the end of our street. The bog near us is actually a working bog, operated by Brian Handy, who grows some 180 acres of cranberries in the towns of Falmouth and Bourne that he sells to Oceanspray. Every fall, we see the delicious berries ripen to a glowing red. Cranberry juice just happens to be one of my favorite drinks so it’s pretty cool to know that the juice I like so much may have come from right down the road. Even cooler is being able to watch how the berries are harvested before they end up as juice in our fridge.
Every October, like clockwork, we notice a more prominent redness to the bogs. A few days later, the workers are out there gathering their harvest and we think to ourselves, “We should photograph this.” But, it happens so fast and life is so busy, we inevitably miss it saying, “Next year!” Well, this year, we finally made it out there and spent a couple of hours documenting the process. The guys we spoke with at the bog said this year’s harvest was less abundant than in years past thanks to the dry weather we had in August and September.
The method of collecting the cranberries has changed quite a bit over the years. The days when workers had to hand pick the cranberries from the vine on their hands and knees are gone! Today, only a few workers using large machinery are able to harvest several hundred square feet of bogs in a fraction of the time. These changes have led to some unrest in the town and as a result this bog may not harvest cranberries next year, which made us feel ever better about finally getting out there.
We hope you enjoy the show as much as we did! Happy Thanksgiving!