2018_10-19 Jeff LaFleur, owner of Mayflower Cranberries, LLC described to local and international visitors how cranberries are cultivated and harvested. He is shown operating the Water Reel.
Cranberries have pockets of air inside making the berries float. Bogs are flooded to a depth of about 12-18 inches to aid in removal of fruit from the vines.
Water reels, aka “egg-beaters” are used to loosen and dislodge the cranberries from the vines. Once free, they float to the surface. Wooden or plastic “booms” are used to round up the berries, which are then lifted by conveyor or pumped into a truck to take them to the receiving station for cleaning. More than 90% of the crop is wet harvested. Wet harvested cranberries are used for juices, sauces, sweetened dried cranberries, ingredients in other processed foods or in nutraceutical products.