The Berry People, Hollister, Calif., is expanding production. ( Courtesy Berry People )

After its first successful season growing organic strawberries, Berry People, Hollister, Calif., is expanding its Mexican program in Baja California.

The berries are available 8 by 1-pound and 12 by 8.8-ounce formats, and production will ramp up this month and peak in February, according to a news release. The season lasts through April and tapers off in June.

Berry People plans to plant on additional acreage for “substantial” volumes next season in  November and December.

“We are grateful for the industry support we’ve received to date, and we are at the same time challenged to improve our overall offering and execution to the brand promise of a year-round and full-line supply of branded organic berries,” Berry People President Jerald Downs said in the release.

The company formed in late 2017, and focuses on relationships throughout the supply chain, according to the release.

“We are building an experienced and well-balanced team, establishing our distribution and supply footprints, and developing important summertime production to finish out our year-round presence,” Downs said in the release.

Hires in 2018 include Damon Barkdull as sales manager/senior commodity manager. He has extensive produce industry experience, including produce sales representative at CH Robinson, account manager at Frieda’s Specialty Produce, and sales and business development at Uesugi Farms.

Tom Henslee has also joined the company. His career includes positions at the David Oppenheimer Co., Nash De Camp Co., and Richland Sales Co.

“These initial accomplishments, while significant, are difficult to savor in light of the plans that lie ahead,” Downs said in the release. “In all of this, we hope to remember every step and person along the way, carefully selecting preserving the relationships with the people that make up our inclusive berry community.”

The company also has conventionally-grown berries, and avocados, sold under the Avo People brand, according to the release.

 
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