The Kennan region of Aomori is a major producer of cherries, specifically in the towns of Nanbu, Hachinohe, and Gonohe. Production in Hirosaki and Aomori city in Tsugaru region has grown in recent years with the use of apple pruning techniques.
Half of all cherries produced in Aomori are of the Sasanishiki variety. Cherries have gained popularity as a fruit of seasonality. In academic terms, cherries, or sakurambo, are called Outou, meaning the fruit of sakura. The cherry species grown in Japan are classified as Kanka Outou, the sweet cherries.
In the town of Nanbu, which is the top cherry producer in Aomori, cherry picking has become a popular activity. The Nagawa Sakurambo Gari is an annual cherry picking event held between mid-June to mid-July, attracting visitors from near and far who want a taste of the cherries at their peak.
The key to having the best eating experience is to eat cherries that are fresh. Cherries can only be stored for about two days before they lose their quality and taste. It is best to chill cherries right before eating, without leaving them in refrigeration for too long. Choosing cherries with thick and especially green stems and fruits that are firm and glossy promises the freshest quality.
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