Former Olympic & World Champion Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill signs up to encourage the North-east to get “berry healthy” this summer.
Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill, face of the GB Olympics 2012, Olympic Champion, triple World Champion, mum of two and entrepreneur, has today been announced as the new face of … a range of premium berry varieties.
The former athletics star Dame Jessica has signed up to become the official ambassador of Zara strawberries, Victoria Sweet blackberries and Maravilla raspberries.
All these varieties are grown by Castleton Farm in Fordoun, Aberdeenshire and supplied into many of the UK supermarkets, including Tesco and Marks & Spencer.
Castleton Farm is a member of Berry Gardens, a co-operative of leading British berry growers which has partnered with Ennis-Hill.
The aim is to encourage people to actively consider the specific berry varieties as part of their healthy eating plans, especially as we slowly emerge from the effects of the Covid pandemic.
Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill said: “I ate berries as a child, as an athlete and still do now, as a mum of two energetic kids.
“As a berry lover, I know that not all berries are equal and Zara strawberries, Victoria blackberries and Maravilla raspberries are the tastiest berries I have tried, and they’re grown right here in the UK by our hugely talented and passionate growers.
“They are packed full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and anthocyanins which are great for brain, eye, heart, gut and skin health as well as helping reduce inflammations and boost immune systems. What’s not to love?
“In Britain today I think everyone accepts we have a job to do to educate people on the benefits of not only being active but also in eating healthily.
“As we emerge from Covid, there has never been a better time for everyone to revisit their diet and find ways to improve their overall health and wellbeing.
“When we look for snacks, nutritious tasty foods such as Zara strawberries, Maravilla raspberries and Victoria blackberries are a winner.
“They’re all low-cal, low-fat, low GI and great for you whatever kind diet you follow whether full carnivore, flexitarian, pescatarian, vegetarian, vegan or entirely plant-based.
“As we start to have a little bit more freedom to go out shopping or to have people round for meals again, albeit in our gardens for now, it is a great time for people to explore healthier choices when choosing or making their meals or snacks – for example sliced Zara strawberries in salads, Maravilla raspberries in smoothies and Victoria blackberries in shakes and protein balls.
“While, like so many of us, I do use berries in baking, I am also a huge fan of adding them to smoothies, or on yogurt or porridge and my children love them as a snack.
“They are so tasty and packed with vitamins and goodness.”
Nick Allen, CEO, Berry Gardens said: “Our premium berry varieties are grown in fields here in the UK and tirelessly looked after by some of the world’s best growers, as a result they are packed with flavour and nutrition.
“Who better to encourage Brits to embrace the very best, high-quality British berries as a delicious every-day health food than the nation’s sporting sweetheart, Dame Jessica!
“We’ve made this decision now as the country emerges from a difficult period and is focusing on health, and wouldn’t it be good if Jess encouraged more of our sports stars to lend their weight to supporting healthy, fresh food?”
Ross Mitchell from Castleton Farm said: “We are proud of the work, skill and passion that goes into growing & picking the high-quality and super-healthy, nutritious berries which we supply to UK supermarkets.
We hope that with endorsement from Dame Jessica we can showcase just how good our berries are for you.
“It gives people yet another reason to add British berries to their healthy eating plans, and in turn, making a real difference to the nation’s health and wellbeing.”
About Castleton Farm:
Castleton Farm grows and produces the best traditional Scottish food, grown, picked and processed on its family farm.
It is a successful family-run business growing and supplying fruit, manufacturing food products and running a café and farm shop.
About Berry Gardens:
Berry Gardens was formed in 1972 and is the UK’s largest co-operative of British berry growers, supplying a large percentage of the nation’s berries and cherries. Member growers span the whole country from Kent to Scotland.
Driscoll’s® Zara Strawberries – bursting with naturally sweet flavour and a deep ruby red colour; a great source of Vitamin C, an antioxidant necessary for immune system and skin health.
Driscoll’s® Maravilla Raspberries – fresh in colour, sweet-tasting, with a great shelf-life they provide more than half of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C to help support the immune function, as well as being a great source of fibre.
Driscoll’s® Victoria™ Sweet Blackberries – deliciously sweet and twice the size of regular blackberries means double the amount of goodness; Driscoll’s® Victoria™ Sweet Blackberries are packed with beneficial vitamins and minerals, fibre, and antioxidants.
About Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill:
Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill is one of the greatest British track and field athletes of all time. A specialist Heptathlete, the pinnacle of her athletic career came in 2012, when she claimed Olympic gold in London and captured the hearts of a nation in the process.
Jessica won three world titles (2009, 2011, 2015) and was European champion in 2010. Displaying extraordinary resilience, Jessica won the heptathlon world title in Beijing, just fifteen months after giving birth.
Jessica, now a mother of two, juggles mum life with founding a women’s training business – Jennis – an app and website created to help women optimise their training in line with their hormonal cycle to improve their body literacy. Jessica is very much at the helm of the business and its evolution. She also works with brands as an ambassador and BBC Sport as a pundit for their athletics coverage. Jessica supports a number of charities including The Sheffield Children’s Hospital and the Weston Park Cancer Hospital, Sheffield.