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Over the last two decades, strawberries have experienced one of the highest rates of consumption growth of all fruit and vegetables. Strawberries are the fifth highest consumed fresh fruit, behind bananas, apples, oranges and grapes (ERS 2005). Expanded domestic supply and increased availability, as the industry transitioned from seasonal to year-round production, stimulated consumption. New information on health benefits of strawberry consumption because of their antioxidants, folate, potassium, vitamin C and fiber content also stimulated their consumption. Per capita consumption of strawberries has increased steadily since 1970 from 2.9 pounds to 6.1 pounds today, rising most significantly in the last 2 decades . In the 1970s, fresh consumption accounted for 60 percent of total consumption until it increased in the mid 1980s. By 2003 fresh consumption accounted for more than 80 percent of total consumption. Per capita consumption of frozen strawberries has not increased at the rate of fresh consumption, remaining at just over 1 pound per capita for most of the last 30 years. Consumption of frozen strawberries peaked in 2001 at 1.6 pounds, the same year that supply of fresh market strawberries and per capita consumption of fresh strawberries decreased from 4.9 to 4.2 pounds per capita.

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A sweet soft red fruit with a seed-studded surface.