New SC berry farmers flourish
Andy Rollins: I had met with the owners of a marketing group called "Sunnyridge" and I knew that they were expanding farms in the North Carolina area. And I knew Jose and I had a group of about five or six other farms who were interested in finding out what they could grow to make money. And so those were all the people that I gathered together for an educational meeting with Sunnyridge. Once we knew that was what we wanted to do, we actually went into North Carolina and we looked at several farms that were there. And we looked at farms here, in this area that had been growing blackberries for a long time. So we learned from other farmers what was going to be the best way to do it. We learned about the varieties, we talked with specialists, so we got advice from the highest places. All I did was present the information to Jose and as a farm; he made the right decisions and is now a successful, operating farm. So he is an example of somebody who has gone from not farming at all his entire life, to becoming a new farm here in South Carolina.
Jose Landa: He was the one that made me know about them. I contacted them and then we started on this process to create the farm and make the selection of the type of variety we were going to start. Where we are is because the Clemson agent is being here, helping us.