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Kent Non Alcoholic Drink of the Year Winner: Biddenden Vineyards Sparkling Apple Juice

Established in 1969, Biddenden Vineyards is owned and managed by the second and third generations of the Barnes family.

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Established in 1969, Biddenden Vineyards is owned and managed by the second and third generations of the Barnes family. Biddenden Apple Juice has been produced on-site for many years, with the style of juice drawing on the family’s expertise as winemakers.

Apples from experienced local growers are used to produce Biddenden’s range of juices, with the fruit being left on the trees until ‘orchard ripe’ to ensure the fullest flavour and highest juice levels possible. The full process from pressing through to bottling takes place on-site at Biddenden, where the juice may be purchased at the Vineyard Shop as well as online for home delivery.

There is much of our business that is naturally sustainable and has been for many years now, including sourcing all of our fruit locally and carrying out the full process from pressing through to bottling on-site at Biddenden.

We have a state-of-the-art dual-belt apple press that is capable of pressing up to 7,000kg of apples per hour and extracting an impressive 80% of the juice from the fruit. The resulting pulp is then fed to livestock locally or goes to an anaerobic digester. We also supply to a granola maker who is using the pulp to create an ‘upcycled’ - and very tasty - granola, currently using 250kg of pulp per month. This means that production is entirely closed loop and zero waste to landfill. For energy production, we have solar panels that generate a third of our electric needs at peak.

We employ solely local staff, with all of our team living within 10 miles, which not only cuts down on travel and associated emissions but also acts to keep money within our local economy and in turn spend with other local businesses.

When it comes to packaging, we have recently switched to use cardboard produced from 50% recycled materials. We use sugar cane carrier bags in the shop which are 100% biodegradable and will be offering reusable cups for outside events this year. All of our drinks are packaged in glass bottles, which are fully recyclable.

We are open to visitors throughout the year, with much of our wine, cider and juice being sold direct from the cellar door, and we also supply to independent businesses throughout Kent and the South East. All of the deliveries to our stockists are made in our own vans, with set days allocated to different areas to reduce miles travelled and enable an efficient delivery service.

By supplying our drinks direct to our customers, we are directly in touch with trends and demand, which means we can produce each product in a suitable batch size to match likely need and reduce the likelihood of overstock and potential waste.

We are constantly reviewing how we can work in the most sustainable ways possible, and the business will continue to evolve as new ideas and approaches emerge within the industry.

One thing that will never change is the quality of Biddenden’s products and the care and expertise from the Barnes family and all of the team that go into making them