plant city strawberries

Always a treat, regardless of how they’re prepared, Plant City strawberries — a literal ton of them — might soon become world famous. / Florida Food & Farm file photo

Fresh Plant City strawberries have always been well known to those who savor their succulence. But on Friday, March 3, delectable Plant City Fragaria × ananassas might become world famous. Beginning at 10 a.m. during the Florida Strawberry Festival in Plant City, the Cabot Creamery Co-operative is joining forces with the festival to create the world’s largest smoothie.

The Guinness World Record attempt will benefit two nonprofits: United Food Bank of Plant City and Feeding Tampa Bay. This is the 87th annual Florida Strawberry Festival held in Plant City, known as the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World. The festival runs March 2-12.

Will use 1 ton of Plant City strawberries

The Cabot Smoothie team, led by Chef Jimmy Kennedy, will blend a strawberry yogurt smoothie made from 250 gallons of Cabot Vanilla Bean Greek Yogurt; 2,000 pounds of fresh Plant City strawberries; 3,375 pounds of ice; and 265 pounds of Cabot Whey Protein powder.

The current Guinness World Record — 825 U.S. gallons — for the largest smoothie is held by McGill University of Montreal, Canada. It was a multi-fruit concoction that included watermelons, cantaloupes, berries and bananas. Members of the Cabot Smoothie team don’t just want to surpass that record. They plan to shatter it by blending 1,000 gallons of strawberry yogurt smoothie.

Roberta MacDonald, senior vice president of marketing for the Cabot Creamery Co-operative, said “The 1,100 farm families who own Cabot Creamery are dedicated to supporting communities where we sell our dairy products. Raising money for United Food Bank of Plant City and Feeding Tampa Bay is one of the many ways our farm families give back.”

The Florida Strawberry Growers Association sells a cookbook ($25). Visit

Smoothie sales help the hungry

The record-setting attempt will take place at the Cabot Tent. Blending begins at 10 a.m. and is expected to take four to six hours. All proceeds from the sale of the huge smoothie – sold in commemorative cups for a suggested donation of $1 – go directly to United Food Bank of Plant City.

In keeping with Guinness World Records’ zero-food-waste policy, any remaining smoothie will be donated directly to Feeding Tampa Bay and will be distributed to local food banks and pantries.

Lack of food a big problem

Thomas Mantz, executive director of Feeding Tampa Bay, said “The enormity of this record reminds us of the enormity of the hunger issue in our community, with 700,000 of our neighbors not having stable access to food.”

The smoothie will be made using two people-powered Vitamix bicycle blenders, four commercial and six residential Vitamix blenders. Once mixed, the contents will be continuously poured into a 1,000-gallon food-grade holding vessel packed in ice.

For more information about the Florida Strawberry Festival, visit