WEDDINGTON, N.C. -- From a distance, Hunter Farm in Weddington appears like it's always looked. But when you get a little closer, you can see the damaging effects of Saturday's storm.
Eric Anderson can explain why. He's a fifth generation farmer at Hunter, and the farm is always on his mind. Saturday was no exception.
"When the storm started, I was in Waxhaw," he said.
Eric Anderson admits he panicked. "And I was like, if it's half as bad in Weddington as it is in Waxhaw, then there goes the strawberries."
Andy Anderson is Eric Anderson's dad. He's farmed the land for decades. It was once a massive homestead. "At one time we had over 600 acres on the farm," he said. Now, the farm sits on just 60 acres. "I'd say I probably lost 10 percent of the crop."
Ten percent of the strawberry crop is gone. It is all bruised and spotted because of Saturday night's brutal hail storm. "It's edible, but you can see those spots on there," said Andy Anderson.
Because their margin on strawberries is tight, Saturday's hail storm may mean the Andersons don't make a profit.
"I may or may not. It'll be close," said Andy Anderson. He's hoping some of the plants that didn't sustain any damage will pull him through. "Some were protected by leaves and those berries weren't damaged at all," he said.
The family is also hoping people will look past the imperfections. The bruising won't affect the taste, Andy Anderson said. "Probably not. It'll affect just how they look."
But for Eric Anderson, a young farmer, the loss is deep. The yearly profit is used for two important things at Hunter Farm.
"One to have enough money to replant next year, and two, this farm is old. There's a lot of stuff that needs to get fixed," he said.
If the weather holds up and if the berries ripen, Hunter Farm could open for strawberry picking as soon as this weekend. It's located off of Providence Road in Weddington.