USA Pears is kicking off the new harvest season with a topping to rival pineapples: pears! 2019 began with a pineapple controversy so strong even the U.S. Homeland Security cited it as an example of Russian interference, and now it’ll end with a scandalous fruit topping.

“We are proudly declaring that there is nothing wrong with using fruit as a pizza topping,” said Neil Ferguson, communications specialist for the nonprofit USA Pears, which represents over 900 pear farmers in Oregon and Washington. These farmers produce 88% of the fresh pears throughout the U.S.

The new challenger to the throne of controversial toppings will begin its quest for world domination on September 14 at FEAST Portland. USA Pears will also coordinate with pizzerias nationwide to feature pear pizzas and even host a contest for food bloggers and pizza lovers to post their own pear pizza.

Related: Summer Recipe: Pear & Goat Cheese Pizza

Ferguson hopes this multi-faceted campaign will enlighten people on the many ways they can eat this fruit.

“Unlike other fruits that are far too polarizing of a pizza topping, we believe that pears, especially the 10 varieties that come from the Northwest, are a topping that will surprise and delight those who have never tried the combination,” he says. “Whether served up on a white sauce pizza with gorgonzola and walnuts, or a red sauce pizza with ham, mozzarella, and red onions, or any number of creative ways, pears are amazing when roasted on a pizza,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if they’re making it at home or enjoying it at their favorite pizza establishments, we feel that the time is ripe for people everywhere to taste the joy of pear pizza.”

To kick off the #pearpizza campaign, USA Pears is teaming up with Rally Pizza from Vancouver, Washington, to serve pear pizza to the foodie-centric crowd at FEAST Portland’s Big Feast. Rally has built a large following in the Portland area with their Neapolitan style pizzas that utilize local seasonal ingredients, including pears.

Related: YouGov Survey Finds Americans Deeply Divided Over Pineapple as a Topping

Chef Alan Maniscalco and his wife Chef Shan Wickham both founded Rally Pizza. “We are longtime fans of putting pears on pizza, and we are looking forward to enlightening the good people of FEAST Portland [about] the sweet and savory eating experience of pear pizza,” said Maniscalco.

To make pizza lovers aware of pears as the ultimate fruit topping, the USA Pears team will host a contest for a chance to win a Gozney Roccbox pizza oven. Restaurants around the U.S. will highlight their own pear pizza offering on social media, and influencers and bloggers will create their own pear pizza recipes with retailers sharing content provided by USA Pears.


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