Home – About Broadwater Farm

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Welcome to the
Broadwater Farm Website

Broadwater Farm (Howard Chapman Ltd.) is located in the beautiful and historic county of Kent, in the south east of England. The farm grows apples and pears.

We are renowned for supplying top quality fruit to UK supermarkets. If you think you would enjoy working at Broadwater, then come and join our team.

“I may only recommend this place. It was a pleasure to meet you all and to spend a season on Broadwater Farm!” – Adam (Czech Republic)

Watch the 2011 Bramley Apple video, filmed at Broadwater Farm.

Looking for a summer fruit picking job in the UK?

We currently harvest around 9-10,000 bins of apples.  We have around 80 pickers, mostly recruited through this website, with around 20% coming from AG Recruitment (http://agrecruitment.eu).

Everyone enjoys the harvest with some very positive comments being left on our testimonials page.

Find out more about working on the farm in the summer  and read what our previous harvest workers have said about their experience with us – fruit picking.

If you are interested in working on the farm then visit our how to apply section.

If you are a harvest worker from a previous year you might wish to visit the photo library and see if you or someone you remember is there.

“I would like to thank all the staff at Broadwater farm for the most enjoyable summer working with you all and to all the people who were also picking this summer, a great bunch of people to have worked with. Big thanks to you all.” Steve (England)

Some Useful Information About the Farm

Howard Chapman Ltd (HCL) was originally a stand in the Old Covent Garden Market, selling produce from South America that had been shipped across by the Blue Star shipping line, together with meat due for Liverpool Docks.

It was decided that HCL needed some seasonal produce from the UK.  This was when the farm in Kent was bought.  To start with crops were grown to suit the seasonality but gradually over the years the farm focused on what it did best which was top fruit growing.

Broadwater has an underground spring which flows under the farm.  This water is available to the tree roots extensively.  This means that we can grow very good quality fruit of particularly good size.

In 2009 we extended one of our existing stores to include some good quality CA storage mainly for Bramley, which can now be kept in a 5 and 1 atmosphere.  This has extended our storage so we can store all year round.  Our total capacity is around 2000 tons.

We have embarked on a programme of planting in recent years which has seen the emphasis change from mainly culinary to 70% desert.  In total we farm around 170 ha, of which, 85 ha is apples.

We are extracting some of our underground water into a reservoir to provide trickle irrigation to land which is out of the natural valley and to improve flexibility around the farm.  Also we have recently grubbed a large unproductive area of fruit and now have an arable operation.  This is also to provide flexibility and creates a rotation for our fruit crops.

In 2011, we commissioned an 83kw solar array on our cold stores.  This is providing power directly to our cold store plant with any excess being returned to the grid.

We also have a voltage optimiser which reduces the incoming current to 220v saving around 15% of our energy usage.

The farm borders the old West Malling Aerodrome, which was a very important air base during WWII and up until 20 years ago hosted a very popular air show.  There is also evidence of the Pluto Line (Pipe Line Under the Sea), built in 1944 to supply advancing troops in France, for operation Overlord, during the allied invasion of Normandy.

Broadwater Farm is a member of Fruition PO, a Producer Organisation with whom we have a marketing agreement to market our crop.  We also benefit from EU funding which has been of great assistance in developing our business www.fruitionpo.co.uk.