10 facts you may not know about N.J. cranberries

Last week we looked at the cranberry. New Jersey is the third largest producer of this Thanksgiving favorite in the United States..A "Scarlet Knight" variety of cranberry, released in 2012 by Nicholi Vorsa, director of Rutgers’ Philip E. Marucci Center for Blueberry and Cranberry Research in Chatsworth, is named after the Rutgers teams and its table-ready, dark "night" color. Unlike most cranberries, this variety is intended for the fresh fruit market and table displays, so it’s larger, has a more pleasing hue, a longer shelf-life and a more uniform shape.

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The case for the cranberry, New Jersey’s native Thanksgiving fruit

Pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin pies, pumpkin picking. Given the preeminence of the orange squash and the number of products using its name, it’d be easy to think there’s no other fall flavor. Yet what about the pride of the Pine Barrens – that tart, ruby bauble known as the cranberry?…Enter Nicholi Vorsa, a scientist who’s worked with New Jersey’s cranberry crop since 1985. Director of Rutgers University’s Philip E. Marucci Center for Blueberry and Cranberry Research in Chatsworth, at the heart of cranberry country, he’s working on a way to make cranberries less tart, potentially allowing for the addition of less sugar.

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Master Gardeners visit Little Sprouts Early Learning Center

A group of Master Gardeners under the leadership of Claudia Kunath recently continued their education program at the Little Sprouts Early Learning Center with a presentation about the season of autumn. "Our goal with this presentation was to focus on the season of fall and what happens to trees and seeds," explained Claudia Kunath, the Team Leader for the Master Gardeners for Little Sprouts. The group staged a story complete with puppets and props, and then set up stations for crafts and further examination of seeds and fall foliage.

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Rutgers remembers naturalist who documented fisher’s re-emergence in N.J.

Rutgers University will dedicate a kiosk at the entrance to a network of nature trails on its Livingston campus Sunday in memory of naturalist and former student Charlie Kontos, who died suddenly in 2010 at the age of 33. Kontos, who was an adjunct professor and PhD candidate at Rutgers, is widely credited with discovering the re-emergence of the fisher in New Jersey when he captured a photograph of one of the small carnivorous mammals in 2006. Before his discovery, the fisher was thought to have left the Garden State long ago.

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Rutgers: Adding casino gambling to race tracks would benefit all of New Jersey

The Rutgers Equine Science Center released "2014 State of the New Jersey Horse Racing Industry", a follow-up to the 2009 white paper which reported the impact of slot machines and video lottery terminals on the horse racing and breeding industry, agriculture, and open space. The authors of the current report, Dr. Karyn Malinowski, Director of the Rutgers Equine Science Center and Dr. Paul Gottlieb, Chair of the Rutgers Department of Agricultural, Food, Resource Economics, utilized indicators of horse racing industry health in comparison to two neighboring states where alternative gaming revenue supports horse racing. These indicators included: purse monies awarded, number of race days, races restricted to state-bred horses only, mares bred, and foals registered.

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