The BC Tree Fruits is a 500-member primarily apple-growing co-op that has been operating in British Columbia for 80 years. But it took the recent cider renaissance for the co-op to make the jump into the most obvious market an apple growing concern imagine: cider. BC Tree Fruits has officially launched The BC Tree Fruits Cider Company and is now distributing its “Broken Ladder” hard cider.
Canned rather than bottled, Broken Ladder seeks to deliver a “premium” cider product. The new concern heavily promotes the fact that a single ingredient appears on its label: Apples. The inaugural Broken Ladder Cider is a product of a “secret” blend of six apple varieties, although the new cider company won’t say which varieties.
On its website Broken Ladder states, “Most other ciders are concocted using flavourings, concentrates, sugars and water.” While it is more accurate to say that most cider consumed is concocted of concentrates, sugars and water, their point is one that won’t fail to impress those looking for a cider reflecting the fruit, rather than a popular style.
Currently Broken Ladder is being sold through British Columbia’s Liquor Distribution Branch Stores as well as at independent liquor retail stores in four-packs of 473 mL cans for $11.49. The company has announced that later it will introduce the cider in cage-stopped 750ml. bottles a la sparkling wine.
The cider boom has been an important development for Canadian and American apple growers who have seen their profits sliced over the past few decades due to low-priced imports of apples and concentrates from overseas. New craft cideries seeking cider apples as well as dessert and culinary apples for pressing have not only provided a new market for apple growers and co-ops like BC Tree Fruits, but often the price cideries pay for their apples is higher. The development of the BC Tree Fruits Cider Company and their recently launched Broken Ladder Cider is a development that both consumers and apple growers can cheer.