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In just a few acres in the fine county of Dorset, grows an abundance of organic blueberry plants. These rows of shrubbery plants were first planted in 1964 and are now managed by the Brothers Farm since 2015. Come the months of July and August, you'll find each blueberry bush heavy with juicy plump fruits that are bursting with sweet and sour delightfulness.
This plot of blueberry plants was originally planted by the Trehanes, who, now retired, have passed the blueberry-baton onto Dorset brothers Josh and Dan. Since 2015, Josh has been tending to the what he calls 'the Bluebs', perfecting the methods and making of maintaining these aged and beautiful plants. After a number of years of farming on his own, Josh roped in his brother Dan to help him manage the 'oldest blueberry plantation in the UK'. And with that, in 2018, Brothers Farm was born.
The blueberry season is incredibly short, best to harvest only in the months of July and August. To diversify the farm, the brothers started to grow cut-flowers and introduce a seasonal cafe in the summer - which I can confirm offers up a splendid coffee and cake selection, alongside their own harvested honey and of course their outstanding blueberries.
UK blueberries have been under threat with farmers being forced to give up, but the Brothers Farm is a shining example of where our food and farming needs to be heading in the UK, encouraging small-scale and diverse enterprises that can offer a range of nutritious produce to their local community, and to supply local, organic blueberries is, in my opinion, really rather special. But small-scale farms and food producers like Brothers Farm need help from the top-down, rewards from government for producing such nutrient-rich foods for local people. The organic blueberries you'll find on most supermarket shelves have been shipped from any of the following countries (Spain, Poland, South Africa, Argentina, Italy, Chile, Peru, Morocco), nothing on these Dorset organic blueberries regarding taste, exploding with sugary sweet, sour nectarous notes. As you've probably noticed already, I cannot recommend them enough.
"Step by step we are still trying to make a living from growing organic fruit AND improving the farm along the way by diversifying its income, productivity & biodiversity in a way that will enable the farm to live on after we have had our time too." - Josh & Dan, Brothers Farm
Brothers Farm was recently nominated in the BBC Food & Farming Awards as Best Food Producer. Follow them and book in to PYO here.
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