Our company "Gojiberries v. Mentzingen" is located in southern Germany, in the hilly landscape in the north of Baden-Württemberg, in Neuenstadt am Kocher. We live in one of the warmest regions in Germany and the ripening of the gojiberries benefit from our temperatures and sunshine. The landscape is characterized by varied agriculture and beautiful mixed forests.
In the 16th generation, my husband's family lives on and with agriculture, at that time it was, as was customary in the past, a traditional mixed farm with cattle, and later there was a growing trend towards agriculture. Each generation has different priorities and only constant change and adaptation to current society needs has ensured its survival to this day, such as growing asparagus at the moment. Since we took over the company, we have been looking for a future-oriented type of agriculture that keeps an eye on the ecological aspects as well as the economy. Our origin lies in traditional conventional agriculture. In 2016 we had the opportunity to take over one of the oldest Demeter companies in our area as an extension. Both my husband and I were at the local Waldorf school during our school days, so Rudolf Steiner's ideas were not foreign to us and we accepted the takeover as a challenge and enrichment of our agricultural work. In search of a new and innovative product for our Demeter company, we came across the Goji berry, which has only become known in recent years. We are the first company in Germany to grow berries according to Demeter guidelines and to dry berries grown in Germany.
Our three goji berry fields have a total area of approx. 3 hectares. If it is necessary due to the weather, we water the plants with water from the stream stove by means of drip irrigation. So far we have not had to use crop protection. If pests occur, we will try to control them by using beneficial insects.
In addition to the goji berries, we have two small orchards with very old trees. Insects, birds and bats find shelter here. Grasses and nettle are allowed to grow here all year round.
During the season, my husband and I receive support from our long-term seasonal workers, who we pay well above the minimum wage from the third month onwards.