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Thoughts from category: fruit

autumn has officially arrived

We've been getting very excited about autumn. We found a load of fruit in the UK that we've made into a seasonal recipe, available in little bottles and big cartons. And we've made a film about it too...

The recipe is damsons, blackberries and elderflowers (in bottles), while the carton has damsons, blackberries and apples in it. Our elderflower growing friends in Hertfordshire had a tough year this year, so there were only limited amounts of elderflowers available.

It's good to get ingredients from harvest to bottle in a matter of days, so we hope you enjoy this recipe. From field to fridge in the blink of an eye.

a film about our strawberries

We've tried loads of strawberries over the years and have realised that Senga Sengana is the variety that tastes best. And seeing as we want our drinks to taste the best, that's the variety we use. Senga isn't grown in the UK, so we go to Poland to get ours. We were there a few weeks ago, and made a little film while we were there.

This season's crop has been excellent - you can taste and see the difference - check out the deep red colour and intense flavour of our strawberries and bananas smoothie at the moment.

well behaved pineapples

We like to buy fruit from farms that make that extra effort to look after their workers and the environment. So we've been buying Rainforest Alliance certified bananas for a while now, and are keen to get our pineapples certified as well. However, at the moment there are no farms certified to the standard to provide them to us. Our Jess went to visit pineapple growers in Costa Rica recently, to learn more about pineapple farming, and to understand what actions were needed to get the farms certified.

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After a bit of research and chatting to the farmers, it seems that the three main areas the farms are working on are conserving biodiversity, protecting the soil from erosion and worker safety. So we'll be working closely with the farms and auditors from the Rainforest Alliance over the next few months on these three main areas, and will hopefully get that certification. Oh yes.

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Yolanda and Francisco (Rainforest Alliance auditors), and our Jess

A word about the pineapples we'll be buying...they're called Mayan Gold and are really juicy and sweet. The plants and the pineapples are very prickly on the outside, so you have to wear special clothes when picking them, to protect your skin. The pineapples are prone to sunburn if they're on the outside of the plant, which means that they don't look so pretty but they still taste great.

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strawberry fields forever

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Last week Lucy, Sam, Felicity and Vanessa took a trip out to Northern Poland to have a look at the Senga Sengana strawberries we use in our smoothies. This was a very well timed trip as Senga Sengana strawberries are currently in harvest right now (plus it's quite hot in Poland at the minute so the girls could break in their summer wardrobes at last).

Here they are trying to track down some strawberries.

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It wasn't too hard to find some thankfully...

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Senga Sengana strawberries are the very finest strawberries we can find, deliciously tasty, extremely fruity & juicy with a unique deep red colour.

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Lucy (our chief cherry picker) definitely approves.

If you'd like to try the delicious properties of Senga Sengana strawberries yourself then a great place to start would be our current smoothie of the month, or the old favourite strawberries and bananas. Happy tasting.

we won a green prize

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We just won a special new prize. Now, as you know, not only do we like to buy the best tasting fruit, but we also try to buy it from farms which look after both the environment and their workers. To help us do that, we work with the Rainforest Alliance, an international non-profit organisation that protects ecosystems and the people and wildlife that live within them.

Last week it was the Rainforest Alliance's 20th birthday, and at the celebrations we were lucky enough to receive their Green Globe Award for businesses that "demonstrate an extraordinary commitment to furthering sustainability by integrating environmental and social sustainability into their work."

They only gave out three such prizes worldwide, so we were honoured to win. We promise to carry on being good and doing good, even if Rich and Adam did look like scruffy b*ggers when picking up the prize.

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(l-r Patrick Swayze, Gareth Gates, James Bond)

We'd also like to take this opportunity to introduce you to Carlos Vega, the new Fruit Supply Coordinator with the Rainforest Alliance (we helped provide the funding for his role). Carlos will be helping us buy more Rainforest Alliance certified fruit, including pineapple, orange, acai and acerola.

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He's Costa Rican, loves laptops with big screens, and enjoys a double can of beer before he goes to bed. He knows the fruit industry inside out and is going to be invaluable to us in our quest for more certified fruit.