The benicia is the only true short-day variety that can replace the ventana, the caminos and the older varieties, he said.
The company also has a few albion and palomar varieties.
Sunrise Growers Inc., Placentia, Calif., is going to 100% day-neutral varieties in Oxnard, eliminating the short-day varies, said Christine Herrera, vice president of marketing.
Day-neutral strawberries have larger size, better symmetry and good flavor compared to other varieties, she said.
They will withstand rain better than all other varieties and won’t have huge peaks, she said, “which will lead to a better, more consistent weekly volume of fruit throughout the season.”
In the Santa Maria, Calif., area, Corona Marketing Co. has planted camino, san andreas and albion and a few of the benicia, said Jose Corona, president.
The benicia looks really good, he said, but the company only planted a small test plot this season.
Some companies focus on their own proprietary varieties.
The Southern California acreage of Naples, Fla.-based Naturipe Farms LLC also consists of a proprietary variety, “which holds size late season, ships and eats very well,” said Vinnie Lopes, regional vice president of sales. “It is highly desired by customers and cherished by consumers.”
Red Blossom Farms, Santa Ynez, Calif., has a proprietary variety and grows san andreas and monterey varieties, said Michelle Deleissegues, director of marketing.