The U.S. state of Georgia is famously known for its peaches. In fact, it’s often called the “Peach State” due to its significant production of high-quality peaches. The peach became the official state fruit in 1995. Georgia’s climate, with its hot summers and chill winters, is ideal for growing this sweet, juicy fruit. The state’s well-drained sandy and clay soil also contributes to its success in peach cultivation.
While peaches are not native to the U.S. and were originally brought from China, Georgia farmers started growing peaches commercially in the 19th century. Georgia’s reputation as the “Peach State” was solidified by the late 1800s, when Georgia peaches were recognized for their superior quality and taste. They were shipped across the country, particularly to the northern states, in fancy, colorful crates that advertised Georgia’s peaches.
Peaches play a significant role in the state’s economy, culture, and identity. Numerous cities and counties in Georgia have peach-themed events, like the Georgia Peach Festival held annually in Peach County. Furthermore, you’ll find over 70 streets in Atlanta with some variation of “Peachtree” in their name. In the state capital, there is also the iconic “Peach Drop” on New Year’s Eve, similar to the New Year’s Eve ball drop in New York’s Times Square. The fruit has become a lasting symbol of Southern charm and Georgia pride.