Blueberry Corner, owned by Ben and Heidi Rosewarne, started as an orchard shop in 2005 to add to the already well established orchard business of
local and export blueberries.
Ben and Heidi shifted to Whakatane in 2002 - formerly from south Taranaki, with their then young family.
After purchasing the first orchard on Te Rahu Road, then came the addition of Blueberry Corner in 2005, four years later in 2009 the addition of another Blueberry orchard at Nukuhou north was added. In 2017 another orchard was converted to blueberries on state-high way 30 on the out skirts of Te Teko. This orchard a previous citrus orchard was cleared and 3.5 ha of high tech under tunnel growing system was set up. New varieties have been developed on this site and 2018 sees the first commercial harvest off this site in early October, well ahead of the usual timing for NZ blueberries.
With all four orchards and the growing season harvesting from October through to April, this gives the ability to have fresh blueberries here in New Zealand and right here in Whakatane for nearly 6 months of the year.
Starting with a young family that also really love blueberries has come a conscious effect to move away from a lot of conventional growing practices to that of more ecologically friendly farming practices.
Both really aware of chemicals and residues, Ben and Heidi are constantly trialling new methods of controlling bugs and diseases. Fortunately blueberries require very little in the way of insecticides so this has been easy with the help of this remarkable little berry that has gained so much attention lately for its high antioxidants and diseases fighting properties.