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Farm wants to sell more of its fruit in Canada

Evelyn and David Ernst are the founders of Terra Beata Farms Ltd. in Lunenburg, N.S. Established in 1998, the company ships frozen cranberries all around the world but has had trouble breaking into Canada’s big supermarket chains.

Paul Darrow/The Globe and Mail

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Terra Beata Farms, located on Nova Scotia’s Heckman’s Island, employs from eight to 30 people, depending on the season. Its revenue was about $3-million last year.

Paul Darrow/The Globe and Mail

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It’s harvest time at Terra Beata Farms in Lunenberg, Nova Scotia. Becca Ernst, left, daughter of farm owners Evelyn and David Ernst, works with employee Tina Halliday. Cranberries are harvested with the help of water. When the fruit is ripe, the bogs are flooded, and then the berries are knocked off their plants with a paddle-wheel-type harvester.

David Ernst/Terra Beata Farms

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Don Taylor, a fellow cranberry farmer at Riverbend Cranberries in Lawrencetown, N.S., helps with the harvest at Terra Beata Farms. After the berries are knocked off the plants, they float to the water’s surface. Then, working with the wind, a worker wields a boom and collects the fruit, which is then pumped off the field.

Terra Beata Farms

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The harvested berries are prepared for processing.

Paul Darrow/The Globe and Mail

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Workers conduct quality checks on cranberries at Terra Beata Farms.

Paul Darrow/The Globe and Mail

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Containers of newly harvested cranberries are moved to the juicer. The company makes finished cranberry products such as cranberry mincemeat, salsa, chutney, jelly and sauce with no added sugar.

Paul Darrow/The Globe and Mail

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Cranberries are poured into the juicer.

Paul Darrow/The Globe and Mail

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Here is a bog newly planted with cranberry plants at Terra Beata Farms. Cranberries are perennial plants and can yield berries for more than 100 years.

Terra Beata Farms

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In July the cranberry plants produce blossoms. The plants grow to about 15 centimetres tall.

Terra Beata Farms

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In September, the cranberry fruits are green. By November they will be red and ready for harvest.

Terra Beata Farms

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Terra Beata’s dried cranberries have less added sugar than other brands on the market.

Terra Beata Farms

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Terra Beata Farms also makes a mincemeat filling that customers say tastes like “Christmas in a jar,” co-owner Evelyn Ernst says.

Patsy Gallagher/Terra Beata Farms

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Sean Conrad, production manager at Terra Beata Farms, enjoys a light moment on the last day of harvest.

Willie Wells/Terra Beata Farms

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