Posts Tagged “greenhouse vegetables”
By Pure Flavor
Leamington, ON – With demand for its premium greenhouse vegetables continuing to grow, Pure Flavor® announced recently the investment of more than $105 million USD to build a 75-acre state of the art high tech greenhouse facility & distribution center in Peach County, GA south of Atlanta.
The first crop of Tomatoes-on-the-Vine and Long English Cucumbers will be planted in Summer 2018 to be harvested in mid fall that year.
“We at the Georgia Department of Agriculture and Georgia Grown are proud to welcome Pure Flavor® to our great state”, stated Gary W. Black, Georgia Agriculture Commissioner. “I am confident this innovative venture will prove to be a real asset to Peach County and to Georgia’s entire agricultural sector. Pure Flavor® has indeed found the ideal location for this type of operation and I look forward to working with them as they continue to grow and expand”, said Black.
The new greenhouse complex, located just 90 minutes south of Atlanta and less than 3 miles from I-75, will grow tomatoes & cucumbers year-round. Coupled with Pure Flavor’s existing farms throughout Canada, USA, and Mexico, growing in Georgia will further expand the company’s reach along the eastern seaboard as far north as Virginia, west to Texas, and all the way down to south Florida with premium greenhouse grown vegetables.
“The strategic investment in Peach County, GA is one that will not only expand our acreage but also creates opportunities to strengthen & grow our retail & foodservice partnerships across the southeast with Georgia grown vegetables”, said Jamie Moracci, President. Moracci & his partners spent nearly 2 years researching locations across the USA for this expansion. With the Midwest region, already over saturated with a variety of projects and an abundance of product, developing in Georgia with the first significant high-tech build of its kind in the state, is going to be a game changer.
Key Project Facts:
- Location: Fort Valley (Peach County), Georgia – 3 miles off I-75
- Start of the art, high tech 75-acre greenhouse complex
- Built in three (3) phases of 25 acres over 5 years
- Investment: $105 million
- Distribution area: Georgia, Florida, North/South Carolina, Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Virgina, Kentucky, Missouri, Texas
- New 75,000 sq. ft. distribution center on site to service the southeast
- Installation of High Pressure Sodium (HPS) lighting to assist with year-round growing
- Phase 1 commodities: Tomatoes & Cucumbers
- Creating 200+ new year-round job opportunities over 5 years
- Largest facility of its kind in southeastern USA
“Built in 3 phases of 25 acres over the next 5 years, the financial investment we are making further demonstrates our goal of growing our business in a significant region and not looking at the investment as just growing in a state”, said Jeff Moracci, Chief Financial Officer. With a potential reach of nearly 80 million people in less than a 24 hrs. drive, a regionally grown message featuring the Georgia Grown emblem will help leverage the brand with consumers. The first phase of the project of 25 acres broke ground in September.
International greenhouse manufacturer Havecon has been retained to build the facility in Georgia. Using state of the growing systems, Pure Flavor® will have diffused roof glass installed to take advantage of the southern US, nutrient rich sunlight during peak season. Pure Flavor® will also be installing High Pressure Sodium (HPS) lights to be used as supplemental energy to help grow through the winter months.
““A leader in the global marketplace, Georgia has become a hotspot for international companies who are looking to expand their footprint in the U.S.,” said Pat Wilson, Commissioner, Georgia Department of Economic Development. “Pure Flavor® is taking a highly-specialized, dynamic approach to agriculture that our workforce is well suited to support. With a solid logistics infrastructure and robust network of companies, Pure Flavor® will have all they need to thrive in our state. Congrats to Peach County on this incredible win.”
Under the Pure Flavor® brand, the company grows & markets an extensive variety of greenhouse tomato, bell pepper, cucumber, eggplant, and living lettuce that is grown in Canada, USA, and Mexico. Founded in 2003, Pure Flavor® has experienced significant growth year over year with its expanding product offering. With distribution centers strategically located in Leamington, ON, Detroit, MI, San Antonio, TX, and soon to be Peach County, GA, Pure Flavor® provides year-round availability of premium greenhouse grown vegetables.
“Having Pure Flavor invest in Peach County is proof positive that our community is attractive to newcomers and major international companies’, said BJ Walker, Executive Director, Development Authority of Peach County. “It is confirmation that we possess all of the necessary qualities and assets that are ideal for a business to succeed and grow and we are thrilled and excited to welcome Pure Flavor into the Peach County family!”, said Walker.
“Being strategically located in Georgia with our new greenhouse will enable Pure Flavor® to significantly extend its reach to open more distribution channels along the southeastern seaboard while further supplying existing key retail & foodservice partners across the southern US”, commented Matt Mastronardi, Executive Vice-President.
by NatureFresh Farms
Leamington, ON – The heat of the summer is settling in across the Midwest though this has not deterred NatureFresh™ Farms’ mobile greenhouse tour from missing a beat. Already nearly 50 events completed since mid-April, consumers continue to flock to #GreenInTheCity events to learn more about how greenhouse vegetables are grown.
“The mobile greenhouse has not only been a conversation starter but a difference maker in how we connect with our customers”, said Ray Wowryk, Director of Business Development.
The mobile Greenhouse Education Center (GEC) is a 38’ custom-built unit that is an exact snapshot of how NatureFresh™ Farms grows its vegetables in state of the art high tech greenhouses in Leamington, ON & Delta, OH. Equipped with fruit bearing plants and complimented by a live Bumblebee Eco-System, the GEC serves as an education resource to inform consumers about how greenhouse vegetables are grown.
“We care about the future of fresh and all that it entails; we need to collectively increase fresh produce consumption. NatureFresh™ can help do that with the GEC and by getting front and center with consumers, we share our story to help inform them of the value of greenhouse vegetables. Knowing who grows what you buy is important, understanding how its grown is just as important if not more”, commented Wowryk.
Supporting the GEC this summer are 5 college students who serve as NatureFresh™ Brand Ambassadors at each event. The team is responsible for event day operations and interacting with retail partners to ensure their customers have the best possible experience. With varied backgrounds ranging from agri-business to environmental science to marketing to biology, the team provides unique perspectives of the value of greenhouse grown vegetables.
“We are able to immediately impact consumers purchasing decisions at store level with the knowledge we share about how we grow greenhouse vegetables”, said Cole Burkholder, GEC Team Member & 3rd year Environmental Science Major from Ohio State University. Agriculture is nothing new to Burkholder whose family operates a farming operation of more than 500 acres of row crops in central Ohio. “The look on people’s faces when we explain the greenhouse growing process and they see the live plants with real fruit, it’s priceless, you kind of see that ‘a-ha’ moment in their eyes. We’ve even had customers show us their shopping carts when leaving to show us the tomatoes or bell peppers they have purchased because of our conversation. It’s a pretty good feeling!” commented Burkholder.
Now in it’s 3rd year, the #GreenInTheCity Tour has completed more than 200 events to date across eastern North America connecting with consumers at retail stores, summer camps, schools, and community fairs. The 2017 tour will continue on through early November wrapping up at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto, ON November 12th.
To learn more about NatureFresh™ Farms and the #GreenInTheCity Tour, visit naturefresh.ca/GEC.
About NatureFresh Farms –
NatureFresh Farms™ has grown to become one of the largest independent, vertically integrated greenhouse vegetable growers in North America. Growing in Leamington, ON and Delta, OH, NatureFresh™ Farms prides itself on exceptional flavor & quality. Family owned NatureFresh Farms™ ships Non-GMO greenhouse grown produce year-round to key retailers throughout North America.
Greenhouse growing of vegetables continues to increase whether it is in Mexico, the U.S., or in this case Ontario. It’s popularity is rising, not only because weather conditions can be controlled, but the product itself is ususally better tasting, especially with something like tomatoes. Ontario does have loading opportunities for produce haulers, although we are not normally talking in truck load quantities.
Most of the Ontario greenhouse vegetables are located along the northern shores of Lake Erie, including the towns of Leamington and Kingsville. The reason is this area receives more sunshine than anywhere else in Canada.
The leading green house vegetables are tomatoes, English cucumbers and peppers. This year it is estimated Ontario will ship 448 million pounds of tomatoes, an increase of nearly 18 percent over last year. There should be 250 million pounds of English cucumbers (nearly 23 percent more) and 170 million pounds of peppers, up nearly 31 percent.
There also is much smaller volume with eggplant and specialty peppers and specialty tomatoes.
About 70 percent of the Ontario greenhouse veggies are shipped to the U.S.
While the cukes, peppers, and egglant are compatible for loading together in a truck, the tomatoes are not a good fit. That’s too bad since volume wise at any one time, greenhouse tonnage is relatively low, even though it continues to increase.
If you ever want to check out what fruits and veggies are good for putting on the same truck, check out the Fresh Produce Mixer & Loading Guide from TransFRESH Corp. These are the same folks that provide the Tectrol atmosphere that adds shelf life to strawberries and other products, which helps to maintain quality.
To check this info out, just click on the TransFresh ad on this website.