The company also expanded its shade house eggplant program, converting 20 existing acres of tomatoes and bell peppers to eggplants.
Garza said the market for eggplants has been high over the past few seasons.
“It’s coming back down a bit, but it’s still traditionally high,” he said.
Bland Distribution expands cold storage
In anticipation of greater demand for cold storage, Bland Distribution Services, a division of Glennville, Ga.-based Bland Farms, doubled its cold storage capacity.
Nick Sanchez, general manager for the facility, said the building is about 100,000 square feet, 75,000 of which is refrigerated.
“We have 3,100 pallet positions in 8 separate temperatures,” he said.
The company also has office space available, and room to expand in the future.
Frontera implements item-level traceability
Edinburg, Texas-based Frontera Produce Ltd. is working with HarvestMark for its Veracruz pineapple program.
Each pineapple is tagged with a HarvestMark code that gives information about Frontera Produce and its growing operation.
“The end user will be able to scan the QR code on our pineapple tag and get field pictures and handling tips and recipe ideas,” said Chris Eddy, general manager.
“There’s a whole host of information that the consumer will find useful.”
Frontera Produce has been working with Irving, Texas-based DMA Solutions on consumer marketing and social media efforts featuring Frontera employees and their operations.
Eddy said the marketing has been a good driver to the company’s website.
South Tex Organics introduces label
Mission, Texas-based South Tex Organic LC has a new label, and a new display-ready carton and bags for its organic rio star grapefruit and oranges.
The label, “Nature’s Pick,” is eye-catching, said Garrett Edwards, sales and office manager, and the new cartons should help reduce labor costs and cardboard waste.
The company also added new machinery to its packing facility that shows a three-dimensional image of each piece of fruit, allowing sorting by grade, size and weight.
Texas receives grant for food safety audits
Participating farms can receive a discount of up to $750 on audits of Good Agriculture Practices.
The funds were secured through a grant from the Texas Department of Agriculture.