So the family began making wine, Roberson says, joking it was a case of making lemonade when life gives you lemons.
“They knew the way to maximize yields on their bushes and get more product per acre to really bring the cost down,” he says. But the family asked, what else can we do with our blueberries if we can’t sell them on the fresh market?
The winemaking business proved so successful that the family exited the fresh blueberry business entirely.
Being innovative isn’t necessarily about following a step-by-step procedure, Roberson says. Instead, it’s more of an open mindset and a willingness to take risks.
“A lot of people—it’s surprising—don’t want to try anything new,” he says. “The money up front and the uncertainty prevent them from really growing and moving forward.”