Extension educator receives annual cherry promotion award

Michigan State University Extension educator Jennifer Berkey received the National Cherry Festival’s Very Cherry Promotion Annual Award Jan. 15 at the Cherry Marketing Institute luncheon, part of the annual Fruit Growers Orchard Show at the Grand Traverse Resort in Acme, Mich. The National Cherry Festival Cherry Promotions Committee honored Jennifer with the award for her work as the National Cherry Festival director of the Cherry Connection event from 1999 to 2011.

“It is an honor to be receiving this award as it was my privilege to have worked with the cherry industry on their behalf for 12 years,” said Jennifer. “Increasing consumer’s knowledge about how cherries grow, the myriad of ways they can be used in foods along with how to integrate cherries into their everyday meals was the focus of this educational initiative, and it was a wonderful collaboration with MSU, the National Cherry Festival, growers and producers of cherry products.”

The National Cherry Festival’s Very Cherry Promotion Award was established in 1986. It is given to an individual, couple, group or business, which has demonstrated outstanding efforts in promotion and/or production in the world of cherries. Past winners have included the Grand Traverse Pie Company, Friske Orchards and James Bardenhagen, retired Leelanau County Extension director.

Congratulations, Jennifer!

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