The Onion House making big changes

11/04/2010 02:55:13 PM
David Mitchell

The Onion House is following the credo that everything is bigger in Texas.

Owner Don Ed Holmes said the Weslaco, Texas-based company plans to increase its acreage in Mexico and south Texas by 20% next year.

“We’re increasing our capacity,” he said, “and we’ll be increasing our volume.”

To handle the anticipated surge in volume, the company started an expansion project Oct. 23 that will add 15,000 square feet to its warehouse. The upgrade also will include a new grader on the packing line.

“It’s a nice deal,” Holmes said. “It’s going to increase our ability to pack. We had more growers coming to us wanting us to get bigger.”

Added volume also means more work for the staff. Industry sales veteran Chuck Hill joined the company in early October.

“I’ve known him for years,” Holmes said of Hill, who previously worked 20 years for Griffin and Brand Sales Agency Inc., Hereford, Texas, and has worked 35 years in the industry. “It’s very good to have someone with his experience.”

Holmes said the increase in volume will affect yellow, white and red onions. A new crop of sweet onions starts in mid-January in Mexico, and The Onion House will source from Mexico through June, he said.

Holmes said his company also plans to increase its acreage in Colorado, where it sources onions from August through January.

“It should open up new business,” Holmes said of the higher volumes and expanded warehouse. “We’ll have enough capacity to deal with some bigger receivers. We think it will open some doors for us.”



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