Strawberry fields forever! Shortcake’s Florida state dessert

March 7, 2022 GMT

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Strawberry shortcake will become Florida’s state dessert after Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill Monday at the festival that celebrates the fruit.

DeSantis was joined by the 1993 Strawberry Festival Queen, current Attorney General Ashley Moody, as he took a bite of the dessert before signing the bill in Plant City.

“She’s known more in these parts not even for being attorney general, but being a former queen of the Florida Strawberry Festival,” DeSantis said.

Florida already has a state pie — key lime.

“People will still be able to do key lime as the official state pie, this will be the official state dessert. Just here in the strawberry festival, they serve 200,000 strawberry shortcakes, which is an awful lot. This has been going on since 1930 and it’s a way to celebrate the strawberry crops,” DeSantis said.

The designation of the state dessert is an effort to promote the state’s $1 billion strawberry industry.

Plant City is the heart of the state’s strawberry farming. The region has 10,000 acres (4,047 hectares) of strawberry fields that produce 75% of the nation’s winter strawberry crop.