Cold Spring, Virus Impacting Some Local Strawberries

If you love buying local when it comes to strawberries, this might not be the year for you.

About 5% of North Carolina's strawberry farms are having a hard time surviving this spring. Three of the farms are in Newport.

Not only are the plants cold with the weather, some have a virus stunting their growth, and killing most of the strawberries.

But one farmer says he has a back up plan for your strawberry shortcake. "I'm very optimistic. I think we'll be alright," said Bo Quinn. "I've contacted other growers I know that are not infected by this virus, if push comes to shove, I'll have berries. I can lean on some other people that I know and get berries from them."

Quinn has grown strawberries for 12 years and he's never seen anything like this.

Normally at this time of year, the berries are ready for picking. Quinn says he'll be lucky if 10% of the strawberries survive this year.

The virus came from a strawberry nursery in Nova Scotia, Canada. It does not hurt humans, nor the flavor of the berries.