Collie Blueberry Farm becoming certified organic

Shannon VerhagenSouth Western Times
Collie Blueberry Farm owner Wannaporn Hooley loves all things blueberry and is excited to become certified organic this year.
Camera IconCollie Blueberry Farm owner Wannaporn Hooley loves all things blueberry and is excited to become certified organic this year. Credit: Shannon Verhagen

For the past 14 years, Wannaporn Hooley has been living and breathing blueberries.

When she goes to sleep, she dreams of blueberries.

And next month, the Collie Blueberry Farm owner will enter her next exciting chapter, with the business becoming certified organic.

“We bought this blueberry farm in 2006, and since then we haven’t used any chemicals,” Ms Hooley, pictured, said. “I feel like trees are like our body with what you put in it.

“Mum’s always been really conscious about what she eats and puts into her body, and obviously those values come through into growing her own produce,” daughter and assistant Melanie said.

Collie Blueberry Farm owner Wannaporn Hooley and her daughter Melanie are busy picking and packing thousands of berries over summer.
Camera IconCollie Blueberry Farm owner Wannaporn Hooley and her daughter Melanie are busy picking and packing thousands of berries over summer. Credit: Shannon Verhagen

Each year they sell up to four tonnes of the berries – every single one of them hand-picked – at markets and their restaurant in Collie, and Ms Hooley said the certification would help people looking to eat more organic.

“Being certified, it gives local people more choice if they want to eat organic food,” she said.

“In the South West, we’re so lucky to have such great produce,” Melanie said.

There’s not many blueberry farms in the area, let alone certified organic, so we thought we’d take the leap and fill that gap.

Melanie Hooley

The certification will mean they can no longer offer the ‘pick-your-own’ experience, but people will still be able to purchase the berries on site or in town.

Ms Hooley – who is busy picking, packing and selling thousands of blueberries over summer when they fruit – said it was an exciting new chapter, and was looking forward to making it official.

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