Arnolds Produce in Bury St Edmunds Market,
The Arnold family took over a nursery and fruit and vegetable stall in 1972 since when it has grown to include a wholesale business and haulage fleet.
Robert Arnold’s father and uncle arrived on Bury St Edmunds market after purchasing Hillcrest Nursery, in Stanton.
Robert said: “The market stall came with the nursery. We used to grow quite a lot of the produce ourselves in those days.
“I started on the market when I was 12-years-old working on Saturdays.”
Robert has been on the market for 38 years and now runs the business with his sister, Sharon Arnold, assisted by his daughters.
The business has progressed and expanded considerably since 1972.
The nursery in Stanton now includes a farm shop and garden centre.
The family also runs a wholesale fruit and vegetable business covering most of East Anglia and a haulage company with 20 vehicles.
The haulage company means that Robert can make regular trips to Covent Garden Market, Lancashire and elsewhere to source fresh produce.
He said: “The stall has got bigger. We like to think we sell all the best quality fruit and vegetables.
“We still have a lot of regular customers, some of who have been coming to the market almost as long as me.”
Robert said the market held up well over the years although early morning trade had reduced.
He said: “I can’t complain, I’m happy with what I’m doing.
“I enjoy meeting the people, seeing the regular customers come back every week. It makes me feel I must be doing something right.”
Robert said customers enjoyed the personal service market traders are able to give and often comment that their fruit and vegetables taste better than those purchased from larger retail outlets.
He said: “I would say thank-you to all our regular customers for coming to see us. I hope they will keep coming and we will keep selling best quality products at a fair price.”
Robert’s daughters Kelly, 26, and Nikki, 24, are working within the business – Kelly in the haulage office and Nikki in the nursery and market stall.
Robert said he enjoyed being able to work with his family.
He said: “It works well. It keeps them in employment and us all together.”
This article is courtesy of the Bury Free Press