Yumberry: The Elusive Asian Fruit

Yumberry. Yangmei. Myrica Rubra. Red bayberry. Chinese bayberry. Japanese mulberry. Chinese strawberry. Yamamomo. Waxberry. Monkey face fruit.

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, and so would the yumberry fruit! Known by many names in Asia, these dazzling red (sometimes purple) berries grow on beautiful trees that line the streets and parks of China.

What is a yumberry?

The yumberry fruit resembles a raspberry but is closer to cranberries and pomegranates in flavor. This tiny, tart but sweet berry has been cultivated in Japan and other parts of Asia for more than 2,000 years. Due to its delicate nature and short shelf life, the yumberry plant is quite hard to find. In Japan, it is one of the most expensive fruits on the market (much like Japanese peaches).

Where to Buy Yangmei

Airmart is one of the few legal yangmei suppliers in the U.S. Our producer, Calmei, is the first in the country. Calmei cultivates four varieties of yumberry in the California Bay Area:

  • The Eastern Giant: This is the largest variety, weighing in at 37 grams at most. The tasting notes for this particular yumberry are blood orange, rum punch, summer strawberry, and yuzu.
  • The Purple Pearl: A deep purple color rather than the usual red, this unique variety has notes of sugar cane and Douglas fir.
  • Sweet Violet: These newer berries are a larger, perfectly round version of the Purple Pearl.
  • Crystal: One of the more popular varieties in China, this yumberry stands out as a creamy-white variety with light pink accents.

Health Benefits of the Yumberry

Yumberries contain more Vitamin C than oranges, and like other berries, they are high in antioxidants that reduce inflammation.

In traditional Chinese medicine, practitioners use various parts of the yangmei plant, such as the bark extract to create remedies for sore throats, nausea, diarrhea, headaches, and other respiratory ailments and digestive issues.

How to Eat Yumberry Fruit

yumberry tea

The most popular way to eat these berries is actually to drink them! You can buy yumberry liqueur for mixed drinks like mimosas and use the fruit to make sweet and sour mocktails, tea, seltzers, and even beer.

The yumberry is also a perfect fruit for flavoring desserts and yogurt. You’ll find the berry makes a wonderful addition to acai bowls and smoothies. To savor the fruit longer, preserve it in jams or jellies, or buy it dried or candied.

Other Chinese Bayberry Uses

Waxberry is one of the fruit’s names for a reason. Candles made from Chinese bayberry wax bring good luck on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. The berry wax is ideal for candlemaking because it burns cleanly and slowly without smoking.

You can also find the vibrant red berry in lip balms.

If you would like to add this incredible fruit flavor to food and drinks at your restaurant, bakery, teahouse, bar, or brewery, we’ll be your supplier! Book a call with our team to find out about wholesale ordering.