One reason may be that organics have become more competitive on the growing end as more farms begin growing organically and growers become more efficient, Widerburg said.
As a result, f.o.b. prices for some items have decreased, making them more attractive to retailers, he said.
Boskovich Farms saw opportunities in the sector and has boosted its organic acreage nearly twofold, Oill said.
At the same time, it expanded organic offerings from the handful of “bread and butter items” it had carried the past five or six years to the current wide array that includes three colors of swiss chard, two varieties of kale and bunched beets.
Boskovich Farms also hired organic produce veteran Oill as director of sales and marketing for its B Organic line, Widenburg said.
“The long-term goal for us is to mirror our conventional to the extent we can,” he said.
The Nunes Co., which markets under the Foxy Organic label, has seen steady growth from its organic romaine hearts, celery and celery hearts, said Doug Classen, sales manager for the Salinas-based grower-shipper.
“There’s continued interest across the board from all aspects of the industry,” he said.