Featured Profiles - Fruit & Vine

Featured Profiles

Growing blackcurrants amid increasing climate challenges

With the UK’s climate shifting towards more extreme weather, growing blackcurrants is becoming increasingly challenging for sixth-generation farmer Nick Overy, whose family has been producing the crop under contract with Ribena for 30 years.

Vineyard Profile: Burnt House Vineyard

Brother-and-sister team, Catherine and James Scarff are fourth-generation farmers, who have successfully diversified part of their arable acreage into a successful vineyard with a stunning tasting room; and they have even bigger ideas for the future.

Fruit Grower Profile: Belvoir Farm

Nestled in the idyllic Vale of Belvoir in Leicestershire lies Belvoir Farm. At 60 acres, their organic elderflower plantation is the largest in the UK. Fruit & Vine met with owner Peverel Manners, alongside farm manager Keith Challen, at the start of their elderflower harvest.

Fruit Grower Profile: Hugh Lowe Farms

Having grown fruit since Victorian times, Hugh Lowe Farms has a strong sense of tradition embedded into its practices. However, owner and managing director Marion Regan believes growth is driven by moving along with time, as well as having an unrelenting passion for growing better fruit, year after year.

Tuffon Hall: Diversification is a key driver for family-run vineyard

Nestled in the north Essex countryside, Tuffon Hall Vineyard has much to offer wine lovers thanks to its reputation for producing award-winning sparkling and still wines. More recently however, the estate has also become a popular staycation destination.

Vineyard Profile: White Castle Vineyard

Initially a couple’s retirement dream, White Castle Vineyard has become much more than that. Through years of dedicated work, owners Robb and Nicola Merchant have converted what was once a run-down dairy farm into a thriving enterprise that is now at the forefront of Welsh wine production, renowned for crafting quality wines with care and sustainability.

Grower Profile: Dingle Farm

Dingle Farm grows around 60 different varieties of cherries, apricots and plums in Worcestershire, including a number of trial varieties – with its key aims being to increase yields and fruit size, and to find later varieties. Deputy editor Sarah Kidby spoke to farm manager Matt Foster to find out more.

Tinwood Estate: From salad to sparking wine

Tinwood Estate is a family-owned vineyard growing high-quality grapes that produce fine English sparkling wine. Located on the edge of the South Downs near Chichester in Sussex, owner Art Tukker has seen the parcel of land go through significant changes over the years.

Grower profile: WB Chambers

The Chambers family has grown mixed fruit in Langley, Maidstone since 1648 and now grows around 30 varieties of strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and cherries – a strategy that has allowed the farm to meet niche consumer needs as well as providing a risk-averse strategy in cropping patterns. Deputy editor Sarah Kidby reports.

Prettyfields Vineyard: Great wine “starts with the vine”

Rooted firmly in the Essex countryside, owner Robert Blyth says Prettyfields Vineyard harnesses the local microclimate to “grow the finest grapes and put the very best into our bottles”. Editor Rachel Hicks chatted with him this month.

Grower Profile: Braiseworth Orchards

Growing specialist varieties that get consumers excited about the apple category, and working in harmony with nature, are central to the business direction of Braiseworth Orchards. Deputy editor Sarah Kidby visited the Suffolk fruit farm.

Camel Valley: Award-winning, world-class wines

Award-winning, world-class wines from a beautiful corner of Cornwall. Second generation winemaker, Sam Lindo, turned his back on a city career and moved back to his parents’ vineyard where he grew up. The enterprise is now run as a real family affair, and a true labour of love which shows in the award-winning wines produced. Rachel Hicks writes.

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