Pests, low-quality plants halt Backyard Farms - The Packer

Pests, low-quality plants halt Backyard Farms

08/13/2013 10:25:00 AM
Doug Ohlemeier

Backyard FarmsAfter pulling out its crop because of whiteflies, greenhouse tomato Backyard Farms won’t have product until January after replacement plants didn’t meet the grower’s standards.

In July, Backyard Farms LLC, Madison, Maine, stopped shipments because of the whitefly pests, and destroyed 420,000 tomato plants.

“Our new crop did not meet our high quality standards and we have made the decision to reject the plants and begin again,” according to a statement on the company’s website. “Unfortunately, this means our replanting process will be delayed and we expect our tomatoes to be available again at the beginning of the year. This is unfortunate and unexpected and we appreciate your patience as we work to bring our tomatoes back to the market.”

The company planned to resume shipments in October, but on Aug. 9 stated the replacement plants were inferior and the company would seek a new supplier, according to an article in the Boston Globe.

The setbacks also caused Backyard Farms to lay off some of its workers.

Backyard Farms sells greenhouse tomatoes to a variety of retail chains throughout the Northeast.

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