Monday, 23 November 2015

Chapter 4 – Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus L.) Ecotypes


Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus L.) is an important wild berry that has long tradition as a food and medicinal plant in Europe. Nowadays, bilberries are picked commercially, especially in northern and eastern parts of Europe. These berries are among the best sources of anthocyanin pigments, which have multiple health-beneficial properties. In addition to anthocyanins, bilberries also contain high yields other phenolic compounds and carotenoids, and are a good-to-moderate source of vitamins and both macro- and micro-nutrients. Variation in the quantitative and qualitative composition of phytonutrients has been detected between different bilberry ecotypes, but more comprehensive studies on this topic are still needed. As bilberries have not been subjected to breeding or cultivation programs, the populations of this species still possess the natural variation developed as a result of long-term adaptation, under different growth conditions.


  • Anthocyanins;
  • Ascorbic acid;
  • Bilberry;
  • Carotenoids;
  • Flavonoids;
  • Minerals;
  • Vaccinium;
  • Vitamins

List of Abbreviations

Dry weight
Fresh weight