Help quench a thirst for Clyde Valley apple juice
Unused apples required!
The Clyde Valley Orchards Cooperative (CVOC) are looking for people to donate unused apples from their orchards to meet demand for their increasingly popular apple juice.
Crops from the group’s members were sufficient in past years, but as sales have increased, the group has been struggling to keep up with demand in the area once known as the Fruit Basket of Scotland.
They are looking for donations from anyone who has apple trees that they are unable to use the crop from. They can arrange picking, if needed, and collection from your orchard. In return, they will ensure that you try some of the delicious pressed apple juice.
“Clyde Valley Orchards Cooperative are a community based group dedicated to turning the area’s fruit into products that people want,” says Duncan Arthur of CVOC.
He continues: “We’ve been producing local apple juice for sale for seven years now – you can find it for sale in local delis and farm shops. People have developed such a taste for it that our group, made up of volunteers, can’t keep up with orders.”
As the leading commercial fruit producing area, the Clyde Valley was once known as the Fruit Basket of Scotland. Although substantially diminished in number since their heyday in the 19th century, South Lanarkshire still has the largest number of orchards in Scotland, with current records showing 213.
CVOC is involved with a number of projects which look to revive the diminished orchard resource with support of Heritage Lottery Fund supported Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership (CAVLP), Central Scotland Green Network Trust (CSGNT) and Rural Development Trust.
There are a number of CAVLP supported projects that seek to revive orchards by raising awareness of the unique orchard heritage of the area. Since 2011, 207 individuals have received training in orchard management and been supported to develop orchard products which saw the launch of Clyde Valley Orchards apple juice in 2015.
Ewan Bachell, Development Officer for CAVLP orchard projects says: “through partnership working, 22 orchards have been planted in local schools, a community orchard has been created at Kirkfieldbank, 14 orchards brought into active management, and almost 1000 new fruit trees planted.”
He continues: “An orchard mapping project, managed by CVOC, and facilitated by the National Orchard Inventory Scotland (NOIS), has also just kicked off in South Lanarkshire, where volunteers are identifying and visiting orchards to verify and add to existing data, and entering it onto the NOIS database. Anyone interested in volunteering for the project should contact CVOC directly.”
CVOC will be demonstrating live apple pressing at the seventh annual Fruit Day, on Saturday 1 October at Overton Farm, Carluke.