1-Chris Goad-Michael Harwood-Jim Allen WEB
Amy Sowder

Chris Goad (from left), Michael Harwood and Jim Allen, all from New York Apple Sales, say they’re getting ready for their crop, and blooms are starting. “We had a late spring, which is alright because chances of frostbite are less,” Allen says. “This season, the koru from New Zealand are the best-tasting koru ever. Get in line.”

2-King Kullen group WEB
Amy Sowder

A large group of King Kullen Grocery Co. colleagues get together at the Eastern Produce Council’s annual barbecue dinner meeting a Demarest Farm in Hillsdale, N.J. The company, based in Bethpage, N.Y., is going through a sales deal that means it may be sold to Stop & Shop.

6-Eric Mitchnick-Krysten DeGiglio-Frank Mueller WEB
Amy Sowder

Eric Mitchnick (from left) from E. Armata Fruit & Produce Inc., Bronx, N.Y., chats with Krysten DeGiglio from Village Farms, Lawrenceville, N.J., and Frank Mueller, also of E. Armata. “We’re still committed to growing the first and only authentic mini San Marzano tomato,” DeGiglio said. New Jersey produce is starting up, Mitchnick says. "Mostly greens, herbs and lettuces. The volume is good. Quality is good. Also, all hothouse products from Holland and Canada are coming in," Mitchnick says.

7-Butch Franklin-Jason DeGise-James Spollen WEB
Amy Sowder

Butch Franklin (from left), maintenance technician, Jason DeGise, co-owner, and James Spollen, co-owner, all of Demarest Farm, kept busy as the hosts of the annual barbecue dinner for the large crowd. The farm and store is focusing on its agri-tourism, DeGise says, with pick-your-own peaches in late July, apples in September and pumpkins in October, plus a Haunted Orchards event for Halloween. “For the first time ever, we’ll do an Orchard of Lights hayride throughout the farm, all lit up. It will be magical,” DeGise says.

8-Doug Fisher-Marc Oshima WEB
Amy Sowder

Marc Oshima, cofounder and chief marketing officer of AeroFarms, Newark, N.J., and Douglas Fisher, N.J. secretary of agriculture, chat at the event. “We’re part of the Jersey Fresh program,” Oshima says.

12-Demarest Farm-WEB
Amy Sowder

Demarest Farm is filled with fresh produce, as well as related items and flowers. It's the traditional location for the May barbecue meeting sponsored by the N.J. Agriculture Department.

3-chillin-web
Amy Sowder

EPC members mingle at Demarest Farm, which is filled with fresh produce, as well as related items.

4-groupinside WEB
Amy Sowder

EPC members mingle at Demarest Farm, which is filled with fresh produce, as well as related items.

5-produce WEB
Amy Sowder

Demarest Farm is filled with fresh produce, as well as related items.

13-Michael Shea-Jill Mazer-Tim Grady-Ellen Grady WEB
Amy Sowder

Micah Shea of Taylor Farms, Jill Mazer of Earthbound Farm and Tim and Ellen Grady of NatureSeal, enjoyed the meeting and talking with industry professionals at the EPC event.

9-DougFisher Crowd WEB
Amy Sowder

New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Doug Fisher served as the moderator for the May barbecue dinner meeting, introducing each speaker, from those who gave crop reports to scholarship announcements. “This is a partnership of growers, shippers and marketers under the name Jersey Fresh,” he says. “Our farmers grow it, but you’re the ones who move it and we recognize that.”

10-Tom Beaver WEB
Amy Sowder

Tom Beaver, director of marketing for the New Jersey Department of Agriculture, told the crowd how the Jersey Fresh program helps, and what marketing efforts are happening, from billboards, to aerial banners over Jersey Shore to advertisements for radio — traditional, streaming and public.

14-EPCNolanScholarshipWinnerAndrewAntoch-TheresaNolan-MarianneSanto WEB
Amy Sowder

Theresa Nolan (center) and Marianne Santo (right), EPC president, announce Nolan Family Foundation scholarship winners, including Andrew Antoch (left), who won based on their personal essays on how they overcame an ethics challenge.

11-Theresa Nolan-Jeff Young of A&J Produce Corp and Marianne Santo WEB
Amy Sowder

Theresa Nolan (left) and Marianne Santo (right), EPC president, announce Nolan Family Foundation scholarship winners, including Jillian Young (not pictured), daughter of Jeff Young (center), who won based on her personal essay on how she overcame an ethics challenge.

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