( Courtesy California Giant Berry Farms )

California Giant Berry Farms, Watsonville, is celebrating a milestone this summer with its summer blueberry program — conventional and organic — seeing dramatic production increases.

The company has been growing year-round volume, and this summer’s conventional blueberry supply will see a 25% jump, and organic berry availability is expected to increase by 90%, compared to summer 2018. In total, California Giant expects to see a 45% boost from last summer, according to a news release.

The increase is from new grower partnerships, specifically in Oregon.

“We have worked together at California Giant to develop long-term partnerships with our blueberry farming partners and are excited to see these relationships come together to benefit both of us,” Markus Duran, North American blueberry operations manager, said in the release. “We look forward to sharing details with our trading partners about our expended blueberry program and the volume we will bring to the table with both conventional and organic fruit just in time for summer.” 

Over the past five years, the company has seen its blueberry program grow 15% to 30% each year, according to the release.

Conventional and organic blueberries should be available for retail and foodservice promotions in time for July Fourth, and conventional and organic supplies will continue into the fall as California Giant imports from Mexico and South America.

California Giant will feature crop and promotion plans at the United Fresh Produce Association convention June 10-12 in Chicago, at booth No. 7015.

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