Pick your own (PYO) is not just a fun day out; it’s also an experience that connects people with their food in a meaningful way. At Craigies Farm, PYO embodies our farm-to-fork ethos, supporting local agriculture and providing benefits for both our ‘pickers’ and the community!
In this blog, we look at the wonderful world of PYO and uncover a treasure trove of benefits that picking your own activities bring.
Connection with Food
Picking fruit and harvesting vegetables from the fields creates a profound connection with the food we eat. It allows you to witness the entire process, from cultivation to consumption, fostering a deeper appreciation for the journey our food takes before it reaches our plates. PYO provides an educational experience covering topics like crop varieties, their growth cycles, and the ways to nurture them.
A 2010 Royal Horticultural Society report found that involving children in food-growing activities, such as pick your own, can positively impact their fruit and vegetable consumption. Vegetable intake was almost one serving per day greater in schools with a growing food curriculum, and combined fruit and veg consumption increased by one and a half servings!
Freshness and Quality
When you pick your own produce, you are guaranteed the freshest and highest-quality fruits and vegetables. Unlike supermarket-bought produce, which may have travelled long distances and spent days on the shelves, PYO allows you to enjoy food at the peak of ripeness with unmatched taste and flavour.
At Craigies, we have a wide variety of fruits and vegetables available to pick, such as our popular juicy strawberries, tart raspberries, sweet blackcurrants, tangy redcurrants – and, as an exciting addition this year, superfood blueberries! Simply book a slot and we’ll provide you with an emailed entry confirmation, baskets and advice on arrival to help you get the cream of the crop at Craigies Farm!
Supporting Local Agriculture
While having fun in the PYO fields, you will be actively supporting local farmers (us!) and contributing to the sustainability of your community! You will come away with a new sense of appreciation for where food comes from and the hard work that goes into producing it.
As a family business, we have been dedicated to providing quality fruits and vegetables since 1988. Over the years, we have expanded our offerings and passion for farm-to-fork goodness from a humble one-table shop.
By visiting Craigies Farm for a pick your own outing, you can become part of our story, supporting a local, business that has been serving the community for decades.
For a full list of all the fruit and vegetables available during PYO season head to this section of our website and scroll down to our handy pick your own calendar.
Not only does PYO help you exercise your green thumbs but it also helps reduce the carbon footprint associated with food production and distribution, according to a report published by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations. By picking your own produce, you eliminate the excessive packaging, transportation, and refrigeration of many store-bought options. This hands-on approach is both tons of fun and a more environmentally friendly choice that supports a greener way of living!
If you would like to get more of a behind the scenes look at how our farm runs, check out our Q&A with our farm manager Tom where he talks about his experience working on the farm and reveals all the effort and planning that goes into growing all of our wonderful fruit and veg.
Health and Well-being
Engaging in PYO also promotes physical exercise and well-being. Walking through the fields, bending, stretching, and reaching for ripe fruits and vegetables provides a low-impact form of exercise for individuals of all ages.
It’s an opportunity to soak up that fresh country air and reconnect with nature, contributing to a healthier and happier lifestyle.
You’ll also leave equipped with lots of delicious fresh ingredients for some fabulous healthy recipes. Get inspired by some of our yummy (and easy to make!) recipes like this strawberry smoothie or these apple and cinnamon overnight oats.
Family Bonding and Education
Walking through the fields and picking your own fruit offers a fantastic opportunity for families to bond and create lasting memories together. PYO experiences spark curiosity and kids often learn more about the importance of agriculture, sustainable farming practices, and the value of hard work in a fun outdoor farm ‘classroom!’ You can also combine picking Craigies farm fresh fruits with a play session at our Little Farmers farm adventure park with our special value Pick & Play offer!
Pick your own at Craigies offers far more than just a fun day out. Beyond the joy of picking fresh fruits and vegetables, PYO provides a deeper understanding of the food we consume and encourages a stronger connection to the land and community.
So, next time you visit us at Craigies, immerse yourself in the world of PYO and enjoy the many benefits it brings. Find out more about PYO at Craigies here.