Hello, I am Ann-Christin Heinrichs, I am running our family farm together with my father Hans-Peter already in the 8th resp. 9th generation. Where our apples and pears grow today, until the year 1940 only cows grazed and cereals were planted. After the first apple trees were planted, Josef Heinrichs, my grandfather, finally converted the farm completely to fruit growing. At the turn of the millennium, my father, Hans-Peter, took over the farm and switched to organic farming in the year 2015. Since then, you can find a colourful mix of apple and pear trees, wild herbs and flowers, many insects, bees and bumblebees.
I grew up on our orchard and couldn't imagine doing anything else than helping out right after my apprenticeship. The idea of being able to continue working in and with nature when I grew up motivated me to start studying agricultural sciences in Bonn. During my studies I also had to deal with many downsides of the reality of being a young farmer. Nevertheless, I joined the farm afterwards and have not regretted it for a second since! We are a really good team, everyone in our family can contribute in different areas. This way, we are not only constantly developing our business, but we - ourselves - are also able to grow in new ways.
You can imagine our daily life looking more or less like this: My dad, Hans-Peter Heinrichs, primarily takes care of the cultivation of our apples and pears. He is out in the fields a lot and takes care of instructing our staff. My mum Anita can often be found in the farm shop or in the office. She also takes care of our mason bees in the plantations. I work especially on our marketing and packaging as well as in cultivation. My sister Franziska is the creative head of our family and mainly takes care of the homepage and social media channels.
Of course, our business always brings new challenges. Currently, the most present issues are of course climate change and the development of personnel structures. As an organic farm, we have always relied on new innovations and we are curious to see what possibilities will be offered in the next few years in order to operate even more sustainably. Of course, we also hope that more people will become enthusiastic about agriculture again. We want to make our contribution here and let as many people as possible share our passion for nature and agriculture. We also rely on good partnerships with Frutania, who support us in our new CrowdFarming project, for example. I think it's great to have the opportunity to teach you all directly about our delicious apples. Thanks to our farm shop, we already know about direct marketing, of course. But to be able to send apples directly to consumers beyond our regional borders is something really special!