Canned fruit is not the worst thing in the world, and canned fruit cocktail is defensible as health-adjacent, if not a healthy choice, if you put it up against a typical dessert on the home menu, such as cake, pudding or ice cream.
I typically enjoy the non-heavy syrup versions of canned peaches, pears, and “fruit cocktail,” but I’m never thrilled with the amount of cherries—or whatever those red things are—compared to the amount of other fruits in the can, so I bought the Del Monte Very Cherry® flavor, and was immediately disappointed when I opened the can and dumped it into my serving suggestion.
There’s some fuzzy math here; I counted 14 cherry pieces in this can of Very Cherry®, along with 17 grapes, approximately 35 pieces of potato—I mean pear (if you can tell the difference after it’s soaked in whatever the heck the Very Cherry® cherry-smelling NATURAL CHERRY FLAVORED LIGHT SYRUP is)—and around 70 hunks of peach. So that’s around 122 pieces of not-cherry to 14 pieces of cherry, which makes it to be around 11 percent cherry. Not very!
In the interest of fruit fairness, I figured I should examine some fruit cocktails that made no claim of very-ness, cherrywise. I picked up a scientific sample of other Del Monte products and a store brand to keep it fair.
Right off the rip, Del Monte No Sugar Added Fruit Cocktail, packed in water, and artificially sweetened with acesulfame and sucralose, was a mistake, because I do not enjoy artificial sweeteners. I contend they taste worse than if you just don’t have a sweetener. Del Monte No Sugar Added Fruit Cocktail (ugh) had seven pieces of cherry, which is half the amount of Very Cherry® cherry content.
Brand X was Giant, my local supermarket, and their Fruit Cocktail in 100% Peach Juice & Pear Juice From Concentrate. It was pretty Brand X-y tasting, but the lowest calorie count for non-artificially sweetened cocktails of fruit. The cherries were in pretty ragged shape, but I estimated the scraps added up to 5 normal cherry bits.
As an unfortunate companion to the artificially-sweetened fruit cocktail I would never buy on purpose, here is the regular IN HEAVY SYRUP Del Monte Fruit Cocktail. Another loser because there was a foreign object in my can, urgh!
Five pieces of cherry in this can of regular fruit cocktail, so that makes Very Cherry® mixed fruit around 300 percent more cherry than regular, but big deal, that still means Very Cherry® is 11 percent cherry, and that’s not very! Will some fruit canner out there step up and make a TOTALLY WAY MORE CHERRY THAN VERY CHERRY? This has been CONSUMER PROBE. Thank you.