From Growth to Harvest: Our Process
We’ve been growing apples for a while – since 1963 actually! We started growing for the local fresh markets, extending to UK markets, and then starting to can Bramley apples. In the 90’s we built our first facility exclusively for fresh chilled Bramley Apple produce. We cover the entire process ourselves: everything from growing the apples in our orchards, to on-site storage and even the processing of the apples.
So what is our process? Let’s look at what happens at Glass Brothers from growth to harvest.
We grow our own apples onsite, with new orchard planting in 2008, 2014 and 2018. We also carry out careful management of our orchards with replanting. We use a fully qualified agronomist to oversee bud development and manage our spray programme: meaning the correct products are applied at the right time. This carefully managed process allows us maximum benefit in set, yield and quality.
Bees are placed in our orchards as they are essential for pollination. Then when the apples have fully grown, they are harvested and stored. Harvesting takes place annually from mid-September to the end of October. We carry out this process by hand, entirely managed by ourselves.
Once the apples have been harvested, they need to be stored immediately after – preferably within 12 hours. Our storage facilities were updated in 2017 to ensure our Bramley Apples are stored in ULO (Ultra Low Oxygen) facilities. This means the apples are maintained at 5% CO2 and 1% o2, preventing the apples from ripening. This process involves zero chemicals and means the apples remain fresh, firm and greener for longer – maximising flavour in products.
In 2018 we invested in a brand new state of the art inspection system to automate this element of our process. We have also maintained our BRC Accreditation year after year. Our HACCP system and dedicated maintenance schedule mean we are always tracking our process from growth to harvest, monitoring our apples and ensuring we always provide our customers with the best fruit.
We have long established relationships with growers both locally and throughout the UK and we are continually looking for ways to improve our system.
So there you have it – the Glass Brothers process from growth to harvest. All internally managed, always producing the highest quality.