Piopio Berry Orchard is a 13 hectare orchard consisting of 2 hectares of strawberry plants, 6 hectares of blueberries, 1.5 hectares of raspberries, some cows, calves, sheep, rabbits, many, many birds and our dogs, Syd and Nellie.
When we purchased the orchard in 1993, it had 4 hectares of established blueberry plants. Upon arrival we immediately planted strawberries. We increased the strawberry patch every year (and the car park!) in an effort to meet the demand for our berries, but it was in 2004 when we purchased a neighbouring 4 hectare block that we were able to plant our raspberry plants and substantially expand our strawberry block to suit our needs.
Piopio doesn’t seem like an obvious place to grow berries but over the years we’ve learnt to adjust our growing methods to accommodate the unique Piopio soil and climate. And we believe the results speak for themselves – tasty, delicious and sweet berries, you really can’t beat!
We couldn’t keep our orchard going without our wonderful local staff. In the peak of the berry season we employ over 100 staff, picking berries every single day except Christmas day, to ensure fresh berries are available in our shop every day throughout the season.
Our orchard's isolation from other berry orchards also means minimal disease pressure, which means minimal spraying of our plants. We spray our plants only when absolutely necessary, adhering to strict guidelines set out by NZ GAP (New Zealand Good Agricultural Practice), which is an internationally recognised sood safety programme.