From transforming agricultural land into productive fruit orchards to constructing a leading-edge packhouse outfitted with the latest food-grade technologies while fostering a culture of team pride, it has been quite a journey...
Hortinvest is born
Ross and Sharon Kirk establish Hortinvest Limited at Wanaka, Central Otago.
Daring to dream
Seven investors establish Tarras Cherry Corp Limited. Ross Kirk conducts a feasibility study into growing cherries.
The start of something special
The first cherry trees are planted at Tarras Cherry Corp.
Ross and Sharon Kirk collaborate with traditional sheep and beef farmers to transform land into cherry orchards at Lindis Peaks and Mt Pisa stations.
Major plantings begin
The first cherry tree plantings begin at Lindis Peaks and Mt Pisa.
Expanding the vision
Successive plantings get underway at Lindis Peaks and Mt Pisa.
Venturing into apricots
Ross and Sharon Kirk collaborate with Bruce and Linda Jolly and become the founders of Ardgour Valley Orchards. The first apricots and cherries are planted.
Off to market
The first cherries from Tarras Cherry Corp are exported.
Hidden Valley brand
The Hidden Valley brand is created to market cherries from Tarras Cherry Corp.
Beyond brand launched
Beyond Brand was created to showcase cherries from Lindis Peaks and Mt Pisa orchards
Marketing to the world
Southern Fruits International LP is established as the sales and marketing arm of Hortinvest Ltd and the SFI team, led by Sharon Kirk, attend Asia Fruit Logistica in Bangkok, Thailand in November to meet with discerning cherry buyers from all over the globe.
Packhouse at Tarras
Ross Kirk oversees construction and fit-out of the high-tech Lindis Coolpac packhouse at Tarras.
Ready for export
Beyond brand cherries from Lindis Peaks and Mt Pisa are exported for the first time
Realising a dream
For the first time, fruit from all orchards – cherries and specialty apricots – are packed at the new Southern Fruits International packhouse and exported.