California strawberries business update briefs - The Packer

California strawberries business update briefs

03/28/2012 02:10:00 PM
Mike Hornick

“Future photo-focused grand prizes include a waterproof digital camera, 3D camcorder, and a surfer’s dream waterproof camera mountable to the end of your surfboard,” she said.

Well-Pict grows in California, Florida and Mexico. The company plans to launch an organic raspberry variety, 2933, in May.

Wish Farms starts berry deal in Santa Maria

For its second California strawberry deal, Plant City, Fla.-based Wish Farms has shifted most production from Salinas to Santa Maria.

Acreage is up from 116 in its startup year, all in Salinas, to 138. Of those, 85 are in Santa Maria.

Picking was expected to start in Santa Maria the week of March 12, said Darwin Reich, director of California operations for Wish Farms.

“That will put us in good shape for April,” Reich said.

“Florida will go through April typically, but by April 1 everyone wants to come to California. Most buyers at that stage prefer California fruit.”

Santa Maria offers the company a natural transition.

“We had a gap between Florida’s season winding down and California starting up, so this gives us the ability to go straight through,” Reich said.

“We still plan to expand, it’s just a matter of finding the right people and the right timing,” he said.

Most growers expected Salinas and Watsonville production to start by the second week of April.

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