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Froese Estate Winery. and land well-suited to support
family-run farm, tucked behind the
These sweeping changes for the grapes (a well-bedded and sorted
pulled out in the early 80s as other
looming McIntyre Bluff, took shape
sand and gravel terrace left behind
growers began switching to vinifera.
during what must have been a very
by ancient glacial ice melts
By the mid-80s, following extensive
busy 2005.
provided ideal conditions for
research, the land was totally
grapes), the Coverts decided this
planted in apples
farm purchased by his grandparents
Gene Covert, who manages the would be the most viable Galas paid $600-$700 a bin, three
During those days, Gene said,
Winnifred and George nearly 50
alternative. times more than they were paying
years ago, said the reasons for the
when he pulled the trees out in
change in direction were many.
would bring the farm full circle.
For the Coverts planting to grapes
favour of vines in 2005.
First, Gene and his wife Shelly were
Gene’s father Mike and his Comparatively, grapes pay $2,000-
looking for a way to reduce their
grandfather had planted 180 acres $3,000 a tonne and while there are
workload. As parents of three young
to labruscas, all of which were not as many tonnes per acre, there
children, the couple wanted to
make more time for family. And the
heart of their business, growing
apples and the wholesale sector,
was experiencing massive declining
profit margins.
Winery Supplies
leading edge of change, the Coverts
A family that has long been at the
began discussing a transition to
organics as a way to address the
Fruit Processing Equipment, Yeasts, Enzymes,
financial squeeze.
Lab Supplies, Bottle Fillers, Labellers and more
some experimenting, Gene said they
After doing a lot of research and
determined the risk of involving
their large tree fruit crop was too
6908 Palm Ave., Burnaby, B.C. V5J 4M3
high and wouldn’t be viable. But
Phone: 604-473-9463 Toll-free in Canada: 1-866-55GRAPE Fax: 604-433-2810
with the booming wine industry, a71
Woodworking shop, Stag's Hollow Winery, Wild Goose Vineyards,
Oyama, BC Okanagan Falls, BC Okanagan Falls, BC
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British Columbia FRUIT GROWER • Spring 2009
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