Meiros Orchard – Craig & Gill Wilson

Meiros Orchard is Mt Erin Group's second largest grower with the orchard having been 100% owned and operated since the early 1990s. Over the past few decades the orchard has grown from 10 hectares with 8,000 trees to 40 hectares and 40,000 trees, with another 10 hectares to be developed in the near future.

  • Orchard Name: Meiros Orchard
  • Owners & Operators: Craig & Gill Wilson
  • Location: Dartmor Valley, Puketapu, Hawke's Bay
  • Size: 40ha
  • Varieties: Galaxy, Royal Gala, Brookfield, Fuji Supreme, Pacific Rose. Granny Smith, Lady In Red, Braeburn, Aurora.

Meiros From The Beginning

After living, working, and travelling overseas for several years, Craig and Gill Wilson returned to New Zealand in 1993. Soon after they planted Meiros Orchard's first block in the fertile soils of the Dartmoor Valley in Puketapu, Hawke's Bay.
Over the past few decades the orchard has been through a lot of changes with 60% of the original plantings of Braeburn and Fiesta having mostly been replaced by high-coloured Fuji varieties.
The Dartmoor Valley has a warm microclimate enabling Meiros to produce early harvest crops and grow well. All fruit is produced under New Zealand's world class  IFP programme and Meiros use modern technology to monitor soil moisture levels, thereby looking after our valuable water resources, while producing sweet, crisp, juicy apples for market.

100% Family Owned & Operated

Gill and Craig Wilson have owned Meiros since its inception and both continue to work full-time in the orchard. Their son, Alistair, is currently completing a horticulture apprenticeship and working on the orchard. Meiros also has an orchard foreman, Warren, who has been with the family for many years?

Meiros grow a number of Gala strains including Galaxy, Royal Gala and Brookfield. They also produce high-colour Fuji strains such as Fuji Supreme. Completing the variety stable are Pacific Rose Granny Smith, Lady In Red, Braeburn and Aurora. Craig and Gill have recently planted Pacific Queen on dwarfing rootstocks, this block will come on stream in a couple of years.

Pick, Pack & Ship – Fresh Is Best

Meiros have a core crew of seasonal workers who look after their crop year-on-year. These workers have a sound understanding of the Meiros orchard and its crop, and how it needs to be harvested. This team understand that quality is the focus and they take pride in picking great fruit and seeing it packed and exported to markets overseas.
Meiros start harvesting their early Gala strains in the middle of February then continue harvesting steadily through into autumn and finishing off with the Lady In Red apples in early May. In 2016, Meiros exported just over 100,000 tonnes of apples working on a 'pick, pack and ship' philosophy so fruit reaches markets around the world as fresh as possible.

Looking Into The Future

Meiros also own a share in a Hawke's Bay pack-house with a group of other local growers, which means they're able to control all stages of production to grow, harvest, pack and export the quality fruit they know their customers want.

Meiros are continually expanding their orchard operations and looking to plant new varieties. In the not too distant future they intend to plant Jugala and Dazzle, continuing their theme of growing high-quality sweet red apples early, and growing them well.

 

Over the past few decades the orchard has been through a lot of changes with 60% of the original plantings of Braeburn and Fiesta having mostly been replaced by high-coloured Fuji varieties

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