Benefits of elderberry juice
- Rich in antioxidants, that may stabilize free radicals and protect the body from cellular damage.*
- They are a natural source of vitamins C, E and A, which may boost our immune system.
- Elderberries are packed with anthocyanines and polyphenols, which have anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti fungal properties.*
- Dark berries like elderberry, rate very high on the ORAC scale, marking the effectiveness of reducing oxidative stress. Oxidative stress has been linked to most major diseases in the body.** The ORAC value, or oxygen radical absorbancy capacity, is a measure food scientists use to calculate the ability of foods to fight free radical cells that may cause cancer.
Folk healers have used elderberries for thousands of years for herbal remedies. According to Deni Phillips, in the Elderberry Value-Added Sourcebook, Hippocrates called the elderberry plant “the medicine chest of the country people”.
In Europe and Asia, the market for elderberry juices and extracts is escalating, with the high demand for products such as the European cold and flu syrup Sambucol. In contrast, the uses for elderberry are still developing in the US. Opportunities for elderberry uses in the US do exist, with value added products such as wine, juice, jelly, pharmaceutical and nutritional products leading the way. Currently, many companies are importing Elderberry juice since US production is too low to supply their needs.
Opportunities ahead for the elderberry market
- US market demand is growing. As the elderberry’s super food status grows, this young and rapidly growing industry will need increased production to supply the market.
- Increased research for the health benefits of elderberries. The National Institute for Health awarded the University of Missouri’s Center for Botanical Interaction Studies, monies to explore the possible health benefits of elderberries.
- Elderberry cultivation research is increasing. The Elderberry Improvement Project was initiated in 1997, by SMSU State Fruit Experiment Station, University of Missouri Southwest Research Center, Kansas State University, USDA and Wylewood Cellars, to improve elderberry cultivars.
- The high return on small acreage is a positive factor for farmers. Michael Gold, research professor and associate director for the Center for Agroforestry at the University of Missouri, says three to four tons of elderberries can be produced per acre.