Meet the People Behind B.C.’s Tree Fruit Sector



Sunny Valley Fruit and Carcajou Fruit Co.

British Columbia’s ideal growing climate in the Okanagan, Similkameen, and Creston Valleys allows for 95% of cherries grown in Canada to come from right here in B.C. “With all the sunlight and such an open valley, we get the best flavours in our fruit,” adds Sunny Dhaliwal, owner of Sunny Valley Fruit in Keremeos. B.C. Cherries are available locally from July to early September.

B.C. cherries come in a wide range of varieties, such as Suite Note, Santina, Cristalina, Skeena, Lapins, Staccato, Sentennial and Sovereign. These varieties were all bred at Summerland’s Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research and Development Centre. In fact, 80% of cherry varieties grown around the world were developed right here in B.C.

Carcajou Fruit Co. in Summerland B.C. is owned and operated by the Carlson family. Erin Carlson, owner of Carcajou Fruit Co., sites her father’s move to Summerland B.C. in the early 1990s. Since then, the Carlson family has been operating their cherry orchard, growing nine different varieties of Summerland sweet cherries. Carlson describes Summerland as “the unofficial cherry capital of the world.”

Sunny Dhaliwal’s family has been growing fruit since 1980, with their farming experience dating back to their time as farmers in India. “We sell our fruit worldwide and we’re able to store and keep fruit fresh for months,” said Dhaliwal. B.C. cherries are shipped to markets across Asia, Europe and North America.

Peaches in B.C. are also primarily grown in the southern areas of the Okanagan, Similkameen and Kootenay Valley. B.C. produces some 23 peach varieties, which accounts for 18% of Canadian peach production. Peaches are available in B.C. in August and early September.

“Supporting local farmers is critical in making sure that family farms can persist and can last. B.C. producers are really excited to share their fruit with Canadians,” said Carlson.

Whether shopping at farm stands, farmer’s markets, or retail markets, you can support our local B.C. tree fruit growers throughout the summer.

Key Takeaways:

  • 95% of cherries in Canada are grown in the Okanagan, Similkameen and Creston Valley in B.C.
  • 18% of Canadian peach production is grown in the Okanagan, Similkameen and Kootenay Valley in B.C.
  • Supporting local farmers is critical to making sure that family farms can persist.
  • B.C. peaches and cherries are now available at your local farm stand, farmer’s markets, or retail markets.

About the Company: Sunny Valley Fruit

Sunny Valley Fruit is a family-owned and operated business since 1982, with a 180-acre orchard consisting of high-quality apricots, plums, peaches, cherries, nectarines, and apples. Sunny Valley Fruit is operated by proprietor and third-generation farmer, Sunny Dhaliwal, and his family.

Location: Keremeos, B.C.
Website: krownproduce.com/Sunny-Valley-Fruit

About the Company: Carcajou Fruit Co.

Carcajou Fruit Co. is a cherry farm owned and operated by the Carlson family. The Carlson family grows nine different varieties of Summerland sweet cherries.

Location: Summerland, B.C.
Website: carcajoufruit.com