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10 Tips for Fun on a U-Pick Farm

(exciting upbeat music) Michigan is proud to be
one of the most agriculturally diverse
states in the country. From mouth-watering
strawberries to luscious peaches and crisp juicy apples,
Michigan is an excellent place to explore local agriculture. One of the best places to experience what’s fresh and in season is at a U-Pick Farm,
where you do the picking. It’s a great place to learn
where your food comes from and taste it at the peak
of freshness and flavor. Each season, U-Pick farmers look forward to your visit and they want you to have an enjoyable
experience at their farm. Before you go, here are a few tips to make the most of your day. Number one: plan ahead. Proper preparation can
keep you comfortable. All farms have dirt and
uneven ground, so please wear sturdy, closed-toed
shoes for picking and walking. Wear comfortable, casual clothes that you can get a little dirty. Remember, dirt plus rain equals mud, so boots are often your best bet. You’ll be out in the elements on the farm so on hot days it’s best
to go early in the day and on cool days, you may need a jacket. Number two: check the harvest. Each fruit has a limited harvest time. Check with your local farm to see when the fruit you want will be ready. Most farms post updates on
Facebook or on their website or you can call for availability. Even though many fruits are available year-round in grocery stores, local fruit is only at its peak for a short time. Number three: no pets please! Farms are fun for the whole
family but in this case, leave your furry friend at home. Due to food safety regulations,
the presence of on-farm animals, and crowds of customers,
farms can’t allow pets and it’s not safe to
leave them in the car. Number four: bugs
and bees and spiders, oh my! Bees and other pollinators have a very special role on the farm. Without them, we wouldn’t have fruit. Respect the bees, bugs
and all other critters. They’re all an essential part of nature. Number five: to eat or not to eat? Each piece of fruit is
the farmer’s paycheck. Farmers work very hard all
year to have this one harvest. Most farms encourage you
to try a small sample – it’s part of the joy of picking!
But please be respectful, All-you-can-eat is not okay. Also note, it’s a good idea
to wash fruit before eating. Rain, dirt and critters all
leave a little behind that would be better to clean off. Number six: treat trees, bushes and plants with care. When picking, be sure to treat the trees, bushes and plants with care and courtesy. Watch where you’re walking
in fields, being careful not to break branches or stems and
keep your feet on the ground. Fruit trees are not for climbing. Often, next year’s harvest
is already developing on the tree and it is important to keep the trees healthy and damage-free. Number seven:
watch for wastefulness. Freshly picked fruit is a
beautiful and tasty treat and it is important that
every piece of good fruit be picked and put in your bag. Don’t intentionally drop good fruit on the ground and don’t throw fruit. Even fruit with small surface blemishes or that is slightly
disfigured can be delicious. Number eight: respect the farm. Treat everything at the farm
with respect and courtesy. Please obey signage regarding
rules and boundaries. These are made to keep everyone safe. Use common sense and when
in doubt, ask the farmer. Number nine: thank the farmer. Don’t forget to say thank you. Farmers enjoy hearing about
your U-Pick experience and they want you to keep
coming back year after year. The feedback of customers
is always appreciated. Smiles are too. Number 10: most of all, make great memories and have fun! (exciting upbeat music)

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