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2009 Regional Award Winner
Tigchelaar Berry Farms Inc. – Vineland
Ted McMeekin, MPP for Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale, Jeff Tigchelaar and Melissa Tigchelaar
Dan and Jeff Tigchelaar are helping consumers “fall” in love with Ontario strawberries. Following successful trials in 2006, this farm adopted the concept of planting day neutral strawberries in the fall, rather than traditional spring planting dates. Their production system involves the use of floating row covers to promote late plant development and flower bud initiation for an early spring harvest. By integrating this new production system with an already existing day-neutral and traditional June-bearing strawberry operation, these growers are able to provide Ontario wholesalers and retailers a constant supply of fresh, local, high quality strawberries from May until late October.
Tigchelaar Berry Farms is also the recipient of the $50,000 Minister’s Award under the Premier’s Award for Agri-Food Innovation Excellence program.