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A Haskap Brix of 15 to 21 = Higher Dollars per pound 

A Brix test is an easy, transparent and cost effective way of measuring the health and quality of your Haskap berries in your orchard.

So what is Brix? The quality of fruit and vegetable correlates to the amount of dissolved solids in plants sap or fresh juice. Professor A.F.W. Brix was asked in the 19th Century by the winemakers of Europe to create a way to predict which of the various grape juices would make the best wine. He was honoured by having this measure named after him.

In simple terms higher the Brix, higher the quality of the berry and more Dollars per pound. Lower the Brix, lower quality and lower the price per pound. It works very fairly in the wine and other fruit industries, and we believe it will be the bedrock for Haskap pricing going forward.

All of our haskapa products are created with the Krug philosophy in mind of ‘Nature never gives us the same grapes twice so, consequently, never the same wines twice.’ Therefore the Brix and taste of our Haskap or Honeyberries will vary from year to year.

For more information click here.

What does it measure?

* Brix is a measure of the percent solids in a given weight of plant juice and nothing more and nothing less.

* Brix is often expressed another way: Brix equals the percentage of sucrose. However, the term “sucrose” can vary widely. However the true definition of Brix is actually a summation of the pounds of sucrose, fructose, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, proteins, hormones, and other solids in one hundred pounds of any particular plant juice.

* Brix varies directly with quality and health of the plant and its soil. For instance, a poor, sour tasting grape from worn out land can test 8 or less Brix. On the other hand, a full flavored, delicious grape, grown on rich, fertile soil can test 24 or better BRIX and commands a significant price premium.

Haskap ripe or Haskap not?

The art of telling whether a Haskap is ready for eating is different but not difficult. Having spent the last two weeks harvesting, tasting and testing Brix numbers in Eastern Europe. I feel I am well qualified or better qualified to answer this ‘tricky’ question.

The key point to remember is that the berry is not always ready to eat just because it has turned blue. By combining local taste knowledge with Brix testing on 5 and 10 year old plants, we have drawn up our “Haskap Ripe or Not” table. These numbers may differ because of plant age or soil conditions, but seem to hold true in our one to two year old orchards in Nova Scotia.

Haskap berries ripe and ready to harvest

  • Great Tasting Sweet/Zing Haskap: Brix 15 to 21
  • Sweet/Tart Tasting Haskap: Brix 14

Nearly ripe, but one or two weeks away

  • Tart Tasting Haskap: Brix 12 to 13

Not ripe – two to three weeks away

  • Not Ripe Haskap: below Brix 12

Hope this helps and please drop us an email of the Brix levels of your great tasting Haskap berries! For comparison purposes, here is the Brix index for Blueberries: Poor 8, Average 12, Good 14 and Excellent 18 and Strawberries: Poor 6, Average 8, Good 12 and Excellent 14.

How can a grower measure it?

refractometer

With a refractometer, this is a optical device that takes advantage of the fact that light passing through a liquid bends or refracts. Thicker or more dense liquids refract more (higher brix). This is an extremely exact and no fruit grower should be without one.

Today’s hand refractometers are similar to a five or six inch long telescope, but it has a prism at the end opposite the viewfinder. A calibrated hand refractometer allows determination of a reading or degree brix when you place a drop of juice on the prism and flatten it with the attached cover plate. It costs about $70.

Brix Testing Notes

Start by testing your Haskap plants when they are ready for harvest and remember to test ‘all’ your plants not only your best ones!

As a general rule of thumb, a brix reading of 12 or better indicates reasonable plant pest immunity. This is true of both fruit and leaf readings.

High leaf brix readings protect against frost. Pure water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit, but a 15 brix mixture will not freeze until it reaches 17 degrees.

For further information on Brix and its importance. Please click here.

The Reams Composite Chart

Crop

Poor

Average

Good

Excellent

Disease Free

Apple

6

10

14

18

16

Asparagus

2

4

6

12

(  )

Avocado

4

6

8

12

(  )

Banana

8

10

12

16

(  )

Beet

6

8

10

12

(  )

Blueberry

6

8

12

14

(  )

Broccoli

6

8

10

12

(  )

Cabbage

6

8

10

12

(  )

Cantaloupe

8

12

14

16

(  )

Carrots

4

6

12

18

(  )

Casaba

8

10

12

14

16

Cauliflower

4

6

8

12

(  )

Celery

4

6

10

12

15

Cherry, Sour

6

8

14

16

14

Cherry, Sweet

10

16

20

25

16

Coconut

8

10

12

14

(  )

Corn, Sweet

6

10

18

24

24

Cucumber

4

6

8

12

 

Cumquat

4

6

8

12

(  )

Endive

4

6

8

12

(  )

Escarole

4

6

8

12

(  )

Grapefruit

6

10

14

18

(  )

Grapes

8

12

16

20

(  )

Grapes, Sweet

12

16

20

26

(  )

Green Beans

4

6

8

14

14

Herbs

4

6

8

12

(  )

Honeydew

8

10

12

14

16

Kohlrabi

6

8

10

12

(  )

Lemon

4

6

8

12

( )

Lettuce

4

6

8

12

12

Lime

4

6

10

12

(  )

Mangoes

4

6

10

14

(  )

Onion

4

6

8

13

13

Orange

6

10

16

20

(  )

Papaya

6

10

18

22

(  )

Parsley

4

6

8

12

(  )

Pea, Black-eye

4

6

10

12

(  )

Pea, English

8

10

12

14

14

Peach

4

6

8

12

(  )

Peanut

4

6

8

12

(  )

Pear

6

10

12

14

(  )

Pepper, Hot

4

6

8

12

12

Pineapple

12

14

2

22

(  )

Plums

6

12

16

20

(  )

Potato, Irish

3

 

 

13

13

Potato, Sweet

6

8

10

14

(  )

Raisins

60

70

75

90

(  )

Raspberry

6

8

12

14

15

Romaine

4

6

8

12

(  )

Rutabaga

4

6

10

12

(  )

Squash

6

8

12

14

15

Strawberry

6

10

14

16

16

Tomato

4

6

8

12

18

Turnip

4

6

8

12

(  )

Watermelon

8

12

14

16

(  )

Alfalfa

4

8

16

22

14

Corn, Stalks

4

8

14

20

(  )

Corn, young

6

10

18

24

(  )

Grains

6

10

14

18

(  )

Roses

 

 

 

 

15

Sorghum

6

10

22

30

(  )