Farm unveils drive-thru as way to 'survive' pandemic

The Staffordshire soft fruit farm said it needed to 'evolve and diversify' amid the Covid-19 crisis
The Staffordshire soft fruit farm said it needed to 'evolve and diversify' amid the Covid-19 crisis

Covid-19 and the consequent social distancing measures has led one soft fruit farm to open one of the UK's first soft fruit drive-thrus.

Staffordshire-based Manor Farm Fruits has opened the new 'Strawberry Drive Thru' selling a variety of soft fruit, eggs, cream, and even locally made cakes.

A one-way system sees customers drive up to the kiosk, choose their produce and pay without the need to leave their car.

With a total of 55 acres of soft fruit, the farm, located in Hints, grows strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, gooseberries, redcurrants, blackcurrants and blackberries.



While it would usually host thousands of visitors every year keen to pick-their-own fruits, this season has called for some innovative thinking.

“We knew we needed to evolve and diversify, if we were to survive the current pandemic,” explained farm owner, Elaine Clarke.



“Launching a drive-through, selling fresh strawberries and fruit but also the key baking essentials we know people are searching for, has been the perfect solution.

The drive-through consists of a large kiosk that is being used for the shop
The drive-through consists of a large kiosk that is being used for the shop

"The feedback we are receiving from customers has been amazing”

Portable retail firm Rapid Retail provided the farm with a large kiosk that is being used for the shop and two smaller kiosks used to take admission fees when a modified pick-your-own offering is unveiled in the coming weeks.

Ms Clarke said the popularity of the drive-through has exceeded all expectations: "We plan to build on these foundations by adding even more products.

"We’ll be taking the lead on this from our customers and their suggestions for what they would like us to sell."