MiVT: Shrubbly

Published: Jun. 5, 2021 at 9:14 AM EDT|Updated: Jun. 7, 2021 at 2:52 PM EDT
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HINESBURG, Vt. (WCAX) - Down a Hinesburg dirt road sits the Sayre home. Along with it, is an organic berry farm.

“My wife, Amy, and I had a dream of raising our family in the country. And I had a dream of starting a food business that was rooted to a small farm,” Matt Sayre said.

Matt Sayre and his wife, Amy, searched long and hard for their perfect 15-acre plot of land to make the farming dream happen.

After moving from Burlington’s New North End and building their home, they began to settle in and tackle their next project.

“I started researching fruit crops that were resilient and easy to grow because I was a new grower and really needed something I could handle,” Sayre said.

With the help of UConn Extension, they came across the Aronia berry, an antioxidant-packed super fruit, not commercially grown. Sayre says it was a popular cold remedy among Native Americans.

In 2013, they planted their 500 Aronia berry bushes. They use those berries to make Shrubbly, which hit shelves in February 2020.

“Shrubbly is a drink that all ages can enjoy. It’s really refreshing and we want people to drink it just because it tastes good. It’s actually a really healthy beverage, or we use really healthy ingredients,” Sayre said.

Using the super fruit to create a “shrub” mixer, they also add carbonated water to get the bubbly aspect, plus other ingredients you might find in a health shot.

“Every can of Shrubbly contains apple cider vinegar, which is widely known for its health benefits. And also, our antioxidant super fruit Aronia berries that we grow right here at our USDA organic certified farm,” said Sayre.

There are two flavors out now -- Lemon Ginger and Aronia Berry Pomegranate. It’s perfect for a warm summer day and made in Vermont.

“We have worked hard to be good stewards of the land and Shrubbly is a way that we can take what we produce here and make it available to our community, Vermont, and beyond,” Sayre said.

Shrubbly is available across Vermont and up and down the New England seacoast in 50 stores, including Hannaford.

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