Unless You Paid For Them, Those Blueberries Aren’t Yours.
You'd think it would be common sense... If it's not your property, or you don't pay for something, it's against the law to just take it. It's not like I can just walk into a store and take what I want. Nor would I walk onto a dairy farm and just start milking cows for my milk. But that's exactly what's happening on some blueberry farms in Maine.
Farmers are complaining that folks are just stopping their car on the side of the road, and picking berries right off their farms. And some aren't even trying to hide it. One farmer in Orland said he came upon a family that was picking their own berries right next to the processing truck.
He even goes on to say how the folks seemed confused that what they were doing is wrong, according to WABI - TV5.
Yesterday morning when I pulled in there was a man a woman and their children sitting right next to my truck with the harvester on it, picking berries. And they looked at me and said is this alright? And I said no you’re stealing berries.... Between me losing and the company losing and the owner losing, for a 40X40, you’re talking like hundreds of dollars. A half an acre? You’re talking thousands of dollars.
Blueberry farmers have been facing an array of hardships this season already, and likely most farmers in general. Between a lack of migrant workers, and workers in the blueberry industry having a couple solid incidents with coronavirus outbreaks, the additional burden of loss by theft is just another kick in the backside.
Wild blueberries don't grow in huge clusters like you see in a commercial field. If you see a huge swath of berries, it's a farm. If they're scattered about, they're likely wild. But you also shouldn't be trespassing either. But since regular berries aren't prohibitively expensive, do your local farmers a favor, and get out your wallet.