Greenhouse produce growers expand operations

03/08/2012 11:24:00 AM
Susie Cable

Leamington, Ontario-based JemD Farms expects to market about 10% more tomato volume this year as compared to last, said Jim DiMenna, president.

It has increased acreage in Canada and in Mexico. Peppers and cucumbers also are big-volume items for JemD.

The company has increased pepper acreage for 2012, he said.

Delta, British Columbia-based Village Farms International’s newest year-round production facility, a high-tech greenhouse in Monahans, Texas, has its first 30 acres of tomatoes in production.

The company announced on Feb. 21 that it had harvested its first fruit from the greenhouse, which uses its proprietary Greenhouse Advanced Technology Environment System. Grower Arie Van der Giessen serves in the Monahans location as regional facility manager, said Doug Kling, senior vice president and chief marketing officer.

Kling said hothouse tomato purchases by consumers increased in 2011 as compared to 2010, in part because adverse weather in Mexico and Florida damaged field crops.

Kling said he’s excited to see the overall tomato category growing.


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