BBC1’s Countryfile Visits The Blackcurrant Foundation

This month, we were thrilled to arrange and oversee a visit from Adam Henson and the Countryfile team to blackcurrant grower and member of The Blackcurrant Foundation, John Hinchliff, at his farm just outside Canterbury. 

The Countryfile team spent time with John, as well as Ribena’s blackcurrant agronomist Harriet Prosser, looking at the climate-resilient blackcurrant varieties John is developing in a bid to combat climate change in the UK. A point made more relevant by the 35 degree heat they experienced on the day of filming! 

In recent years the UK has experienced warmer winters overall. Without enough chilling time through the colder months, blackcurrant bushes will not produce the same quality and quantity of fruit. Luckily, The Blackcurrant Foundation, which represents 35 UK blackcurrant growers, is working on a new Innovate UK project. The project is looking to establish innovative ways British growers can encourage blackcurrant bushes to flourish in these warmer temperatures. 

John’s thoughts from the day: "The harvest is looking much better than predicted, which is great news for us as growers, and great news for Ribena, who use 90% of Britain’s blackcurrant crop. We are proud to be able to supply our customers with 100% British fruit and work hard to ensure our blackcurrants maintain the same great quality and flavour every year." 

The episode is due to air on August 11th at 7pm, on BBC 1. Be sure to tune in. 

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Phia Folkes