You’ve probably imagined a bay like ours. The name says it all. The golden sun
streams onto the tranquil turquoise water, soft golden sand and lush native
rainforests. But what does that have to do with growing the best apples
in the world? The answer. Everything.
Growing has always been in our blood, it’s something that runs deep in this corner
of the world. Today Golden Bay Fruit is home to over 350 hectares of
apple orchards and 90 hectares of kiwifruit.
Golden Bay Fruit’s orchards are nestled on the plains between the serene beaches
of Golden Bay and the rugged Takaka Hills.
It’s a unique eco-system with a temperate climate. Our season dawns in spring, with
the sun waking the soil from the cool winter, and an average spring rainfall of
330mm. The long days of the Golden Bay summer balance 740 hours of sunshine
with sea breezes from the bay – providing the perfect
conditions for our fruit to ripen.
While you may yet to have experienced our bay in person – we want every piece of
Golden Bay Fruit to bring you a slice of our pure, New Zealand paradise.
As growers - everything we do builds towards the moment of truth when you sink your teeth into a piece of Golden Bay Fruit. To us, success looks like consistent, unblemished fruit. That taste delicately sweet and refreshing.
Cox Orange is a tart apple grown for the UK and European markets, this traditional variety has an even red hue with a 20% strip colour.
One of the most successful varieties to ever come out of New Zealand, Royal Gala is a sweet, crisp apple with good colouration that is loved the world over.
Born and bred in Motueka, within 10km’s of our orchards, the Braeburn is renowned globally as a sweet tart apple known for having good pressure and storability.
Pink Lady apples are the first apples to blossom and the last to be harvested - this unique trait gives Pink Lady® apples its sweet, juicy taste and even colour.
Fuji is the original sweet apple. Known for it’s large size and sweet, crisp flesh, the Fuji Apple is enjoyed the world over.
Born and bred here in New Zealand, the NZ Queen is a taste experience that has captured the taste buds of consumers in new markets, it is currently the most sort after apple in China and Central Asia
Developed in New Zealand, as a cross between the Braeburn and Gala, Jazz™ has a sweet-tangy taste and a dense flesh, giving it a reputation for having the world’s loudest crunch.
ENVY™ is the latest apple commercialised by HortResearch here in New Zealand. The Envy™ apple is a large, red apple with a sweet crisp taste that won’t brown once it has been cut.
Koru® (plumac cv) is a new, exciting variety that is breaking its way into the New Zealand scene. Discovered here in Nelson off a Fuji tree, the wood was selected and propagated up. This variety has kept its good parenthood characteristics and added many more to the list. It is a large by-colour variety that is naturally sweet to the bite.
On the outside, ZESPRI® Gold Kiwifruit has smooth, hairless bronze skin, inside its golden flesh has a sweet, tropical taste that children and adults enjoy.
ZESPRI® Sungold Kiwifruit offers all the health benefits of ZESPRI® Gold Kiwifruit with the added advantage of extending the time period that Gold fruit is available in the market.
Charm is an exciting new gold variety owned and marketed by ZESPRI®. Charm has an exceptionally sweet taste and is perfect for consumers that prefer the tropical fruit experience.
The classic ZESPRI® Green Kiwifruit, also known as the Hayward variety, is the most commonly recognised and popular kiwifruit worldwide.
HEATH WILKINS — FOUNDING PARTNER & CEO — GOLDEN BAY FRUIT
Each season our team mastermind a plan for the season. It’s a detailed approach that allows us to provide an unrivalled transparency and that distinct Golden Bay taste
Situated at the top of New Zealand’s South Island, in Motueka, Golden Bay Fruit is home to over 350 hectares of apple orchards and 90 hectares of kiwifruit.
Our orchards are GlobalGap and Tesco Nurture certified, to ensure the best agricultural practices.
Our growing season starts with a crisp spring that dawns in September. Our team prepare for the season ahead by pruning and setting trees and vines. As sunshine hours and temperatures grow our trees and vines start to produce green tissues required to grow and feed the coming fruit.
As spring turns to summer in December, our trees and vines begin to flower and bees are introduced into the orchards to help pollinate the varieties of apples and kiwifruit. Once pollination has been completed, the next 30 days are critical to the fruits end characteristics.
Warm weather is required now to produce a clean and well-sized fruit. Over summer our orchards are managed using a balanced irrigation plan to ensure our trees and vines receive the hydration they need, while conserving the amount water we use.
To ensure the freshness of our fruit, we’ve drawn on generations of experience to refine our cool chain process.
From the orchards, our fruit is delivered to one of our Golden Bay Fruit cool stores that are located in the central Motueka area. Our process ensures that apples are harvested one day and immediately put into cool store the next, all bins are carded with the growers details, variety, pick date and GlobalGap number.
From the cool store, we move the fruit efficiently through our pack houses, where the fruit is sorted, graded – optically and by weight, before being and packed to order for our customers. Once it has been packed, the fruit is pre-cooled and returned to our cool stores, ready for export.
Before a single fruit is harvested, our team of growers and marketers sit down with customers to discuss volumes, pack types and delivery time frames.
Once this has been completed we set out a detailed variety planner that shows customer, pack type and delivery requirements. Combining this information with our collective experience, our team tailor a seasonal programme that is designed to ensure the unique needs of each customer are catered to and every order is delivered on time and on spec.
When you partner with Golden Bay Fruit you are working directly with the growers – it’s a hands on approach that makes us unique in the New Zealand market.
Our business was founded by a collective of like-minded growers with the know-how and determination to deliver consistently delicious, premium fruit to customers while optimising returns at the orchard gate.
To achieve this, we’ve designed our business to close the gap between the grower and the end customer and maximise precision and efficiency along each step of the supply chain. For our customers, this means that when you partner with Golden Bay Fruit, you’re working with the team that can influence outcomes on the orchard – it is a truly direct, open approach based on genuine, honest relationships.
Golden Bay Fruit is a collective of like-minded growers on the farm, and a tight group of mates off it. By combining our collective experience and passion with a determination to challenge the status
Birdhurst Orchards is an intergenerational orchard and packing business located in Motueka, New Zealand. Our family has lived and farmed land here for three generations. It was the brothers Kerry and Farran Wilkins who established Birdhurst, managing the transition from 15 acres of tobacco and 48 head of cattle, to a thriving apple and kiwifruit orchard business.
Carrying on the family traditions, Kerry’s sons Heath and Rhys have taken the reigns and built on the generations of experience, tireless work ethic and the entrepreneurial mindset. Guided by these core family values they’ve grown Birdhurst Limited into a unique, world class operation with:
As the business grows, both Heath and Rhys are committed to continuing family traditions and upholding the balanced family values to create a sustainable business for future generations and the wider community.
Heywood Orchards is a family owned company that’s 3 successive generations young. It started with Arthur and Lilius Heywood, who purchased the property known affectionately as “Home Block”, to farm fruit and tobacco alongside the cows, pigs and chickens. When Paul and Mike took the torch from their parents in the 60’s, they managed the transition from tobacco to kiwifruit and apples all the while growing the operation.
Today, under the direction of Evan Heywood and Scott Heywood, the company grows 65 hectares of apples and 30 hectares of kiwifruit, spread from the alluvial river soils of both the Riwaka and Motueka valleys to the Hau stones of Motueka and also on the clay of the Moutere hills.
As Heywood Orchards have grown we’ve taken special attention to preserving the core values that were established by Arthur and Lilius. Their dedication and togetherness has provided the backbone that has helped the business thrive in the face of adversity, ensuring we continue to deliver premium fruit that are true to this beautiful part of the world.
Ashton Wood and his son Donovan are third and fourth generation orchardists. The business dates back to Ashton’s grandfather who immigrated from the UK and established the first family orchard in the Waiwhero, Nelson in 1921.
Following a brief stint as an owner and operator of a bulldozer, Ashton returned to the family orchard to take the reigns from his father. Taking a steady measured approach, Ashton together with his wife Anna worked tirelessly to grow the family operation. Today, Ashton’s eldest son Donovan has entered the fold, carrying on the family tradition of growing premium fruit and building a sustainable orchard business.
Both Ashton and Donovan share the core values of honest hard work, integrity and the importance of family. For them it was a natural decision to join the Golden Bay Fruit and bring a new approach to exporting premium fruit.
Don Urquhart’s involvement with apples began in the early 1970’s when he decided to swap the chill of Scotland for the climatic and human warmth of Motueka. While he was at it, Don felt it was a good time to shift away from traditional farming and dip his toes into horticulture.
In 1975, Don purchased his first orchard, which has steadily grown to 30 ha of high quality apples. For the last 40 years, he has ridden the fruit industry rollercoaster but remained unshaken in the belief that if you grow premium quality fruit, then there is always a living to be made.
Like many other growers, following the demise of single desk selling, Don found it difficult to find an exporter who would market his fruit at reasonable costs. In Golden Bay Fruit, however, Don found an organisation that was transparent in its approach to marketing the fruit and the costs incurred and did everything to maximise returns to growers like himself.
Keith Durants’ horticultural and agricultural pedigree runs deep in the rich soils of Motueka. Three generations of his family have gained their livelihood from the land, initially as tobacco growers.
In the early 1980’s, Keith’s father David decided to supplement the tobacco crop with kiwifruit. In 1989 Keith himself planted his first apples. He has since developed and taken over both the 3 hectares of kiwifruit and 9 hectares of apples.
Keith Durant opted to join Golden Bay Fruit from Day One. What particularly appealed to him was that Golden Bay Fruit was a family operated business that took a fresh and energetic approach to growing and marketing their fruit.
This true connection spans international borders too. Golden Bay Fruit is proud to be a part of the Recognized Seasonal Employer (RSE) international aid programme.
Over the past 10 years we’ve extended the Golden Bay Fruit family to embrace a small community in Epi, Vanuatu and Lepa, Samoa. Every year, we host over 160 Nivans and 40 Samoans without whom our operations would not be possible. During the season, our friends assist with thinning, picking and packing, all done with the level of care and attention required for premium quality fruit. In return we’re proud to help provide the resources and skills to provide for a brighter future for them back home.
Our true connection extends beyond our orchards too. The relationships with our business customers run deep - we keep in close contact with constant updates throughout the season, so you can plan your business with certainty. And it’s coupled with a genuine invitation to experience Golden Bay for yourself.
Share our passion for apples and kiwifruit.
We welcome all business and public related enquires. Contact us directly with the details below or send us a message or question using our enquiry form.
+64 3 528 8492 firstname.lastname@example.org