Orange cherry-grower Greg Perry laying claim to producing world's heaviest cherry

CHERRY, CHERRY: Greg Perry compares his monstrous, potentially world-record-breaking cherry against a normal fruit. Photo: CARLA FREEDMAN
CHERRY, CHERRY: Greg Perry compares his monstrous, potentially world-record-breaking cherry against a normal fruit. Photo: CARLA FREEDMAN

While far from immune to the devastating effects of the ongoing drought, this season has borne the rarest of fruits for Orange cherry-grower Greg Perry, who is laying claim to producing the heaviest cherry in history.

It's no unfounded or speculative claim either, far from it.

After engaging a Justice of the Peace to verify and sign off on the process just hours after discovering the monstrosity on Sunday, Mr Perry is preparing to ship his evidence to the Guinness World Records' decision-makers in the hope of having it's status rubber-stamped.

Weighing in at 25.535 grams, the gigantic cherry eclipses the current record mark of 23.93 grams, set in February of this year by a fruit grown more than 11,000 kilometres away in the glacial, rainforest-covered Aysen Region of Chile.

We went close to the mark with quite a few cherries, getting closer and closer and then we found it, in the last bin.

Orange cherry-grower Greg Perry

In an almost-romantic twist to the narrative's script the gargantuan cherry came from the final bin of fruit to be processed this year and, incredibly, Mr Perry explained it wasn't exactly a bolt from the blue either.

"Earlier in the season we did have some really big fruit, a lot of it too, so a few people had asked 'how heavy is the heaviest cherry?' and we were quite inquisitive," Mr Perry, who owns and operates Altitude Fruits, explained.

"We looked it up and there it was, 23.93 grams, and when we started weighing we hit 22.93 grams pretty early and then thought 'hold on a minute, we might have an opportunity here'.

"We got a bit more serious after that, but we had to make sure we had the right scales because we needed to gauge micro-increments, we couldn't actually find a set in town but we did eventually get our hands on one."

CHERRY RIPE: Greg Perry shows off what he's hoping will officially be recognised as the heaviest cherry in history. Photo: CARLA FREEDMAN

CHERRY RIPE: Greg Perry shows off what he's hoping will officially be recognised as the heaviest cherry in history. Photo: CARLA FREEDMAN

Sure enough, as the shadows began to lengthen on Sunday's final day of processing Mr Perry and his team - finally - uncovered their much-coveted, record-breaking cherry, which came from one of their younger trees.

"We'd put a lot of time and effort into the young trees in the early stages to make sure they were growing properly so because we were quite intimate with them we could watch them grow quite closely, you could tell they just had phenomenal size too," he said.

"We picked them a few days ago and obviously we couldn't weigh every cherry off the tree but after grading them we started weighing the biggest, we had to be quick about it too because as soon as they come off the tree they start losing weight."

In fact the record-breaking cherry had already lost 100 grams in weight by the time Mr Perry spoke to the Central Western Daily, but the initial, official weight had already been recorded and locked in.

"We went close to the mark with quite a few cherries, getting closer and closer and then we found it, in the last bin to put through. Here's hoping we've done enough to get that record made official, we'll be claiming it regardless though," he said, with a laugh.

HEAVY DUTY: The record-breaking cherry (right) compared to a normal-sized fruit and a 50-cent coin, the official reading was 100 grams heavier. Photo: CARLA FREEDMAN

HEAVY DUTY: The record-breaking cherry (right) compared to a normal-sized fruit and a 50-cent coin, the official reading was 100 grams heavier. Photo: CARLA FREEDMAN

Mr Perry went on to admit the behemoth of a cherry was somewhat of an anomaly despite some sizable yields earlier in the season, considering the conditions gripping the state which have taken their toll in Orange too.

"It's all about water management and it is an anomaly in a way because, honestly, there's no water. We've been alright but we've spent a lot of money on the technology, innovations and infrastructure we've needed to get through this season," he said.

"It all comes down to timing, the moisture levels in the ground and a lot of other factors so what we have we've been using sparingly to make sure we're not wasting a drop of it and we're giving the trees exactly what they need when they need it.

"It's been tough for everyone and it will continue to be, but this a bit of a reward I guess, a bright spot."

This story World record ripe for picking as tough season bears rare fruit first appeared on Central Western Daily.