From humble beginnings on their family farm at Warrenheip, the Wilsons have been providing Ballarat with fresh fruit and vegetables for three generations.
When Wilson’s Fruit and Vegetables took out the coveted CGU Commerce Ballarat Business of the Year Award last night, it was fitting that three generations came together to celebrate the achievement.
The gala awards event at the Ballarat Lodge attracted 600 guests from across Ballarat’s business community.
Sixteen businesses were declared winners of their award categories.
As well as winning the CGU Business of the Year Award Wilson’s also won the Haymes Paint Family Business Award earlier in the evening.
The iconic fruit and vegetable business began when the late Arthur Wilson purchased 30 acres of land on the Western Highway at Warrenheip at the end of World War II.
His granddaughter Melanie Fulcher said fruit and vegetables were in her family’s blood.
“My pa and nan started off with an apple orchard and produce gardens and it has continued to what it is now,” she said.
Wilson’s general manager Trevor Wilson said he was blown away by the recognition.
“We have a passion for Ballarat and trying to deliver great quality service the best we can,” he said.
Wilson’s is still family owned and operated, with all three children and all seven grandchildren of Arthur and Barbara Wilson working in the business.
Along with top quality fruit and vegetables they offer everything from specialty breads and condiments to deli items, fresh fruit salad and sandwiches.
The family won the CGU Retail Award in 2005 and 2006 and recently announced a second store in Lucas opening in 2014.
Commerce Ballarat chairman Andrew Rowan congratulated all finalists and winners.
“Once again the awards were extremely competitive which demonstrates the high quality of businesses we have in our own backyard,” Mr Rowan said.