For three generations, Huntington Farms has been growing fruits and vegetables in California’s Salinas Valley for its Nature’s Reward brand. During that time, the Huntington family has built a vertically integrated business that not only grows quality produce, but also harvests, sells, ships and distributes it across North America to make it easier for their customers. But at the core of everything they do is sustainability. From pollinator habitats and grassed waterways to advanced spray technologies and reduced pesticide use, they’re putting our environment and consumer health first.
For those of us in agriculture we know that to produce good food and plenty of it, we need plants with strong roots. They are a plant’s lifeblood, providing an anchor, storing energy, and delivering the critical water and nutrients it needs to grow and produce. In the world of vegetable production, farmers are our strong roots. They are consistently innovating – finding new ways to grow food more efficiently, more sustainably, that looks and tastes great — and above all — that consumers will enjoy. They are passionate, dedicated and on a mission to not only feed our communities, but to also improve our world. Roots: Stories Behind the People Who Help Feed the World are their stories. And we’re honored and proud to share to them.
Ontario-based Platinum Produce is a family owned and operated greenhouse that produces sweet bell peppers, tomatoes on the vine and beefsteak tomatoes. Join the Verbeek family as they take us into their greenhouse and share how their local team delivers the high-quality produce that consumers expect and deserve.
Consumers need access to fresh fruit and vegetables no matter the time of year or climate they live in. That’s why perfection is always top of mind at Mucci Farms, which is producing fruits and vegetables in their more than 250 acres of greenhouses. Danny Mucci, partner in Mucci Farms, says his dad instilled that into everyone there. It starts with workers having a perfect zone of plant health in their section of the greenhouse and continues through harvest, packing and shipping where there is only one human touch throughout the process.
Fowler Plant Company
Located in Moultrie, Georgia, the Fowler family is a key grower of vegetable transplants for farmers throughout the Eastern Seaboard. Using the latest technology and consistent hands-on care, the Fowlers nurture seeds through germination to seedling. When growers use these transplants, they increase the yield potential of their crop and maximize the usability of their acres because every seed has already germinated. As a regular practice, the Fowler Plant Company takes small batches of new vegetable varieties and develops a tailored growing program for each variety so farmers who grow their transplants can be as successful as possible.
The Bedner family is diligent in nurturing and protecting their crops in the field, but they’re equally committed to finding innovative ways to harvest and pack their produce to maintain quality and freshness. As a result, the Bedner team established an equipment division, where they build and service their own custom equipment like their modified harvesters, which allow them to pack produce in the field as it’s being harvested. It’s part of their ongoing commitment to putting healthy, fresh food on consumer tables.
As one of the largest watermelon grower, packer and shipper in the U.S, Melon 1 strives to use the latest growing trends and cutting-edge technology to meet food safety and traceability standards so they can provide customers with the freshest, highest quality product possible. Located in South Florida, with operations across the Eastern part of the US, Melon 1 spans over 15,000 acres where their fields rotate between growing watermelons, sod and pastureland for their cattle herd. No product ever goes to waste, as those watermelons that do not meet Grade A standard are given to their cattle as a nutritious feed source and treat.
Hear how Melon 1 continues to find new ways to remain efficient while continuing to provide customers with a safe and healthy product they can enjoy with their friends and family.
Huntington Farms (Nature’s Reward)
For family-owned, third-generation Wholesum, their mission seems like a simple one – to nourish a healthy world. But how they’re doing it has made them one of the fastest-growing grower-distributors of organic vegetables in North America. It began just before World War II when grandfather Miguel Crisantes Gatziones emigrated from Greece to Mexico and started growing tomatoes. Since then, they’ve been trailblazers in the organic space pioneering with high-tech greenhouses and equipment, growing practices and natural management solutions. But the family may be even more proud of their fair trade certification as they work to elevate and create a more noble food system that fully engages with their workers, the community and consumers.
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