The berries are still generally harvested from the wild, though attempts are being made at cultivation. Some North American farmers are looking at getting into the business of cultivating Lingonberries owing to the growing red tape around growing cranberries (which requires water usage permits, etc.) Commercially, the berries are harvested using berry rakes. In Germany, testing is now (2004) underway on mechanical harvesting.
The berries are similar to cranberries in shape, colour and texture, though they are not as tart as Cranberries. They are usually sold as juice, syrups or preserves.
Lingonberry varieties include Koralle, Sanna, Splendor, Sussi, Red Pearl, Regal and Dwarf Lingonberry
Owing to their tartness, Lingonberries are almost always cooked and sweetened.
Store for up to 8 weeks in fridge (they have a long shelf life owing to their being high in “benzoic acid”).
Lingonberries have been given other Cranberry-like names include Alpine Cranberry, European Cranberry, Lowbush Cranberry, Moss Cranberry, Mountain Cranberry; Rock Cranberry and Wild Cranberry.
“Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. vitis-idaea L.” is the scientific name of the European version of Lingonberries; “Vaccinium vitis-idaea var. minus Lodd.” is the North American version.