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San Miguel announces expansion plans, including partnership with Herndon Farms in Georgia

San Miguel Produce Inc. announced a two-phase expansion of new and expanded growing-processing operations in both the east and west.

The Oxnard, CA-based company said its national retail and foodservice growth of nutrient-dense, specialty greens has made it necessary to expand its growing and processing operations two-fold to provide a comprehensive and strategic, farm-fresh, grower-direct, value-added greens program to meet the demand of its customer base.

The first of the company’s two-part expansion is the addition of the new Georgia plant to open this winter. This location will service its current customer base in the midwestern and eastern regions of North America and open opportunities for new business in this region. This new growing-processing operation is a partnership between San Miguel Produce and long-time grower Herndon Farms in Lyons, GA. Construction of the new processing facility is expected to be completed by November.

The second phase of the company’s expansion is the addition of 40,000 square feet to its current plant in Oxnard, CA. This expansion will help service the company’s customer growth in the western region and expand its product line and volume. Expected completion time for phase two is 2016.  

The combined two farms and facilities will enable San Miguel to triple its current growing and production capacity and provide better service for its expanding national customer base of retail and foodservice partners.

Both facilities will be adding new advanced technologies and processes designed for the many innovative products the company continues to offer and grow.

In addition, both farms and facilities expect to continue to add many new jobs in each region, enhancing the communities they serve.

These two new state-of-the-art processing facilities will set a new industry standard by providing greater innovation platforms for growing and processing dark leafy greens, building on its nearly 40-year heritage for growing greens and 20 years of processing high-quality fresh-cut specialty greens.

San Miguel’s brands include:

Cut ‘N Clean Greens – an extensive line of nutrient dense, specialty greens, both conventional and organic. The Cut ‘N Clean Greens line is considered the cornerstone product of the company and was the first washed, chopped, ready-to-use bag greens on the market launched in 1995. Today, the company said it offers the most varieties of specialty greens year-round throughout North America.

Jade – an authentic Asian greens line that was the first washed, ready-to-use fresh Asian greens on the market when it launched in 2008.

San Miguel Produce – conventional and organic bunch greens that are considered a premium brand nationally for quality and consistency year-round since. San Miguel was established in 1976

As a focused niche company, vertically integrated to manage all aspects of growing, processing and marketing its products, San Miguel has earned the reputation for being the category leader for specialty greens. The company is driven by innovation, quality, data, nutrition and consumer trends all which have played a significant role in helping to take nutrient dense greens such as kale, chards, collard and bok choy mainstream and onto the plates of consumers everywhere.

San Miguel has been an integral part of the Ventura County community for 40 years and new investments like these signify the company’s continued growth and commitment to Ventura County, CA. The company also looks forward to building on that same commitment with its partner Herndon Farms in its new, second home of Toombs County, Lyons, GA.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

San Miguel announces expansion plans, including partnership with Herndon Farms in Georgia

San Miguel Produce Inc. announced a two-phase expansion of new and expanded growing-processing operations in both the east and west.

The Oxnard, CA-based company said its national retail and foodservice growth of nutrient-dense, specialty greens has made it necessary to expand its growing and processing operations two-fold to provide a comprehensive and strategic, farm-fresh, grower-direct, value-added greens program to meet the demand of its customer base.

The first of the company’s two-part expansion is the addition of the new Georgia plant to open this winter. This location will service its current customer base in the midwestern and eastern regions of North America and open opportunities for new business in this region. This new growing-processing operation is a partnership between San Miguel Produce and long-time grower Herndon Farms in Lyons, GA. Construction of the new processing facility is expected to be completed by November.

The second phase of the company’s expansion is the addition of 40,000 square feet to its current plant in Oxnard, CA. This expansion will help service the company’s customer growth in the western region and expand its product line and volume. Expected completion time for phase two is 2016.  

The combined two farms and facilities will enable San Miguel to triple its current growing and production capacity and provide better service for its expanding national customer base of retail and foodservice partners.

Both facilities will be adding new advanced technologies and processes designed for the many innovative products the company continues to offer and grow.

In addition, both farms and facilities expect to continue to add many new jobs in each region, enhancing the communities they serve.

These two new state-of-the-art processing facilities will set a new industry standard by providing greater innovation platforms for growing and processing dark leafy greens, building on its nearly 40-year heritage for growing greens and 20 years of processing high-quality fresh-cut specialty greens.

San Miguel’s brands include:

Cut ‘N Clean Greens – an extensive line of nutrient dense, specialty greens, both conventional and organic. The Cut ‘N Clean Greens line is considered the cornerstone product of the company and was the first washed, chopped, ready-to-use bag greens on the market launched in 1995. Today, the company said it offers the most varieties of specialty greens year-round throughout North America.

Jade – an authentic Asian greens line that was the first washed, ready-to-use fresh Asian greens on the market when it launched in 2008.

San Miguel Produce – conventional and organic bunch greens that are considered a premium brand nationally for quality and consistency year-round since. San Miguel was established in 1976

As a focused niche company, vertically integrated to manage all aspects of growing, processing and marketing its products, San Miguel has earned the reputation for being the category leader for specialty greens. The company is driven by innovation, quality, data, nutrition and consumer trends all which have played a significant role in helping to take nutrient dense greens such as kale, chards, collard and bok choy mainstream and onto the plates of consumers everywhere.

San Miguel has been an integral part of the Ventura County community for 40 years and new investments like these signify the company’s continued growth and commitment to Ventura County, CA. The company also looks forward to building on that same commitment with its partner Herndon Farms in its new, second home of Toombs County, Lyons, GA.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

San Miguel announces expansion plans, including partnership with Herndon Farms in Georgia

San Miguel Produce Inc. announced a two-phase expansion of new and expanded growing-processing operations in both the east and west.

The Oxnard, CA-based company said its national retail and foodservice growth of nutrient-dense, specialty greens has made it necessary to expand its growing and processing operations two-fold to provide a comprehensive and strategic, farm-fresh, grower-direct, value-added greens program to meet the demand of its customer base.

The first of the company’s two-part expansion is the addition of the new Georgia plant to open this winter. This location will service its current customer base in the midwestern and eastern regions of North America and open opportunities for new business in this region. This new growing-processing operation is a partnership between San Miguel Produce and long-time grower Herndon Farms in Lyons, GA. Construction of the new processing facility is expected to be completed by November.

The second phase of the company’s expansion is the addition of 40,000 square feet to its current plant in Oxnard, CA. This expansion will help service the company’s customer growth in the western region and expand its product line and volume. Expected completion time for phase two is 2016.  

The combined two farms and facilities will enable San Miguel to triple its current growing and production capacity and provide better service for its expanding national customer base of retail and foodservice partners.

Both facilities will be adding new advanced technologies and processes designed for the many innovative products the company continues to offer and grow.

In addition, both farms and facilities expect to continue to add many new jobs in each region, enhancing the communities they serve.

These two new state-of-the-art processing facilities will set a new industry standard by providing greater innovation platforms for growing and processing dark leafy greens, building on its nearly 40-year heritage for growing greens and 20 years of processing high-quality fresh-cut specialty greens.

San Miguel’s brands include:

Cut ‘N Clean Greens – an extensive line of nutrient dense, specialty greens, both conventional and organic. The Cut ‘N Clean Greens line is considered the cornerstone product of the company and was the first washed, chopped, ready-to-use bag greens on the market launched in 1995. Today, the company said it offers the most varieties of specialty greens year-round throughout North America.

Jade – an authentic Asian greens line that was the first washed, ready-to-use fresh Asian greens on the market when it launched in 2008.

San Miguel Produce – conventional and organic bunch greens that are considered a premium brand nationally for quality and consistency year-round since. San Miguel was established in 1976

As a focused niche company, vertically integrated to manage all aspects of growing, processing and marketing its products, San Miguel has earned the reputation for being the category leader for specialty greens. The company is driven by innovation, quality, data, nutrition and consumer trends all which have played a significant role in helping to take nutrient dense greens such as kale, chards, collard and bok choy mainstream and onto the plates of consumers everywhere.

San Miguel has been an integral part of the Ventura County community for 40 years and new investments like these signify the company’s continued growth and commitment to Ventura County, CA. The company also looks forward to building on that same commitment with its partner Herndon Farms in its new, second home of Toombs County, Lyons, GA.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Georgia Peach Council launches summertime marketing campaign

Georgia Peach growers are gearing up for a plentiful crop, which is expected to peak in volume and quality during the month of July.  To highlight the flavor of the summertime fruit, the Georgia Peach Council has launched a seasonal marketing campaign aimed at both retailers and consumers.Georgia-Peaches

“There’s nothing like the taste of a Georgia Peach,” the council’s Will McGehee said in a press release. “Our new campaign highlights what has always been the best time of year to enjoy peaches from Georgia.”

For consumers, the council will step up its social media presence by sponsoring three summertime contests. A “Pin it to Win it” Pinterest contest will invite peach lovers to create boards to pin and share Georgia peach recipes (www.pinterest.com/peachesfromGA). An Instagram consumer photo contest is also in the works (www.instagram.com/peachesfromGA). Both contests will use the hashtag, #LoveGeorgiaPeaches, and winners will receive $ 500. Additionally, the Georgia Peach Council will sponsor a “Share Your Summer” giveaway, which lets shoppers of participating grocery stores pin photos to an in-store board or on the grocers’ social media channels.

To extend its brand awareness and educational efforts, the Georgia Peach Council will also schedule a number of television cooking demonstrations in target markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest.

On the retail side, supermarkets in targeted markets may utilize turnkey point-of-sale merchandising display bins, posters with tips on how to pick the perfect peach and a retail dietitian toolkit complete with recipes, nutritional information, blog posts and thought starters. To encourage dietitians to communicate the healthy benefits of Georgia peaches, the dietitian with the most social media reach will receive an expenses-paid getaway to tour the heart of Georgia’s peach country.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Georgia Peach Council launches summertime marketing campaign

Georgia Peach growers are gearing up for a plentiful crop, which is expected to peak in volume and quality during the month of July.  To highlight the flavor of the summertime fruit, the Georgia Peach Council has launched a seasonal marketing campaign aimed at both retailers and consumers.Georgia-Peaches

“There’s nothing like the taste of a Georgia Peach,” the council’s Will McGehee said in a press release. “Our new campaign highlights what has always been the best time of year to enjoy peaches from Georgia.”

For consumers, the council will step up its social media presence by sponsoring three summertime contests. A “Pin it to Win it” Pinterest contest will invite peach lovers to create boards to pin and share Georgia peach recipes (www.pinterest.com/peachesfromGA). An Instagram consumer photo contest is also in the works (www.instagram.com/peachesfromGA). Both contests will use the hashtag, #LoveGeorgiaPeaches, and winners will receive $ 500. Additionally, the Georgia Peach Council will sponsor a “Share Your Summer” giveaway, which lets shoppers of participating grocery stores pin photos to an in-store board or on the grocers’ social media channels.

To extend its brand awareness and educational efforts, the Georgia Peach Council will also schedule a number of television cooking demonstrations in target markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest.

On the retail side, supermarkets in targeted markets may utilize turnkey point-of-sale merchandising display bins, posters with tips on how to pick the perfect peach and a retail dietitian toolkit complete with recipes, nutritional information, blog posts and thought starters. To encourage dietitians to communicate the healthy benefits of Georgia peaches, the dietitian with the most social media reach will receive an expenses-paid getaway to tour the heart of Georgia’s peach country.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Georgia a national contender for fresh fruits, vegetables

Fresh fruit and vegetable production is big business in Georgia, and prospects for future growth are bright. “[We] consistently rank in the top five nationally for fresh fruit and vegetable production,” said Samantha Kilgore, director of communication for the Georgia Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association. “We’re proud of that. There’s an increase of production in all areas.”

“Fruit and vegetable production is almost a billion-dollar industry at the farm gate in Georgia with over 170,000 acres in production,” the association’s website states. FruitVegAssnGeorgia producers, such as Lewis Taylor Farms in Tifton, GA, are getting the ground ready to bring in a variety of fresh produce this season. (Photo courtesy of the Georgia Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association)“Georgia produces a wide variety of fruit and vegetables. As the state’s number two agricultural cash crop, most Georgia fruits and vegetables are grown for the fresh market to be sold and consumed in other states. The GFVGA provides programs and services to the membership designed to increase production efficiencies, provide educational opportunities, promote new markets, monitor legislation, encourage applied research and improve communications among GFVGA members and industry suppliers.”

The state’s commodity list of fresh produce is extensive and includes watermelon, cantaloupe, peaches, blueberries, tomatoes, bell peppers, zucchini, onions, sweet corn, cucumbers and greens.

Although rain hampered growers earlier in the season, resulting in some crop replanting, overall conditions are good. “It’s going to be a great year for production,” Kilgore told The Produce News. “Our growers are busy getting everything into the ground.”

In addition to domestic consumption, Kilgore said opportunities present themselves for Georgia fresh produce to be exported.

Consumers want to know more about the companies producing the food they eat, and Kilgore said there is a push to bring producers and consumers together. Interest in agritourism has never been stronger. “It’s more than [pick-your-own] operations,” she said. “People want the farm experience. Georgia producers on board with being transparent.”

According to the 2012 Georgia Farm Gate Value Report, released last November by the Center for Agribusiness & Economic Development of the University of Georgia, ag-based tourism had a farm gate value of approximately $ 194 million that year.

Kilgore said Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black continues to push for increased recognition of Georgia production through the Georgia Grown program. “Our No. 1 goal is to aid our agricultural economies by bringing together producers, processors, suppliers, distributors, retailers, agritourism and consumers in one powerful, statewide community. We’re here to help new agribusinesses grow, and established agribusinesses thrive,” the program’s website states.

A variety of branded material is available for use, including wearable items that also support the program.

“We are seeing a lot of people identify product as Georgia grown,” Kilgore said. “I think producers are hopping on that wagon. Growers want that connection.”

Kilgore said retailers are increasingly taking advantage of special promotion programs, such as Meet Your Farmer, to put a real face to Georgia agriculture. She said consumers have the chance to actually meet farmers and discuss their operations right in the produce department.

The University of Georgia report provided the following data about fruit and vegetable production in Georgia during 2012. As a category, fruit and vegetables had a farm gate value of approximately $ 1.260 billion.

Rankings for the top 60 commodities in 2012 revealed the following data for rank/commodity/approximate farm gate value/percent of Georgia farm gate value for fresh produce:

Blueberries: 12/$ 229.2 million/1.64 percent; watermelon: 15/$ 186.2 million/1.33 percent; onions: 17/$ 163 million/1.17 percent; miscellaneous vegetables: 21/$ 114.7 million/0.82 percent; bell peppers: 22/$ 108.8 million/0.78 percent; sweet corn: 26/$ 79 million/0.57 percent; cabbage: 32/$ 45.9 million/0.33 percent; cucumbers: 34/$ 43.3 million/0.31 percent; tomatoes: 35/$ 39 million/0.28 percent; peaches: 36/$ 33.8 million/0.24 percent; greens: 37/$ 33 million/0.24 percent; zucchini: 39/$ 27 million/0.19 percent; cantaloupe: 40/$ 21.9 million/0.16 percent; strawberries: 48/$ 9.8 million/0.07 percent; apples: 49/$ 9.4 million/0.07 percent; blackberries: 53/$ 6 million/0.05 percent; grapes: 54/$ 6 million/0.04 percent; and other peppers: 56/$ 4 million/0.03 percent.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Georgia peach growers keeping close eye on crop

TGF-FruitImageGeorgia peach growers keeping close eye on cropCold weather, including overnight freezes in north Georgia this week, has the potential to damage the peach crop, but at least one farm in our area seems to be doing fine.

Drew Echols with Jaemor Farms in Lula said the windy night Tuesday actually did their peaches a favour. “When those winds tapered off, we ran our wind machines and picked up a couple of degrees. Our crops this (Wednesday) morning looked pretty darn good.”

Echols said the temperatures were supposed to be a bit warmer Thursday morning, but there’s no strong wind in the forecast. Despite a few dead peaches, the 70-acre Lula-area crop was still holding strong.

Echols said peaches in South Georgia are facing a harder time. He spoke with another farmer in Fort Valley Wednesday. “There’s a little bit of damage, and the reason that they have some damage is because those peaches are already out of the shucks, what we call the shuck. It’s basically just a little naked peach sitting there,” Echols said.

As for the peaches at Jaemor, they still have some shucks and flowers, giving them more protection, according to Echols, but he still hopes for warmer overnights soon.

Source: accessnorthga.com

Publication date: 3/28/2014

 

FreshPlaza.com

Letter From The Editor: South Georgia Needs A Trial That It Won’t Forget

During the past week, it was my good fortune to return to South Georgia where farmers are still waiting for their fields to warm enough to plant the 2014 peanut crop.

The Blakely, GA plant — once was a major purchaser of Georgia peanuts — stands empty. It’s one of the few inactive sites in the Early County Industrial Park along Highway 62. All signage from the now defunct Peanut Corporation of America is gone.  The South erects a lot of historical markers, but as yet, there is no sign in Blakely telling the story of how poison peanut butter from PCA ended up killing nine people and sickening 700 others to become one of the most deadly Salmonella outbreaks in U.S. history.

All that exists is the blank spot where PCA’s once familiar sign stood when the outbreak it caused frightened every parent in America, including the two who reside in the White House, because almost all kids love peanut butter.  I first visited Blakely when the outbreak was underway, and the local folks seemed to either be in denial or fearful about the outbreak’s impact on the Georgia peanut industry. And there were about 180,000 fewer acres planted with peanuts in the first planting season after the outbreak.

Yet one would be hard-pressed to find a long-term impact on the industry. Georgia plants half of all U.S. acreage dedicated to peanuts and accounts for 50 percent of the nation’s peanut production at 1.7 million tons. Almost all the counties in the bottom half of the state plant peanuts, providing 50,000 jobs in the 70 counties. About 3,500 farmers plant peanuts on 14,000 individual farms.

It’s common for acreage to be planted in peanuts one year and cotton the next. Dr. George Washington Carver developed that crop rotation strategy to give the South’s worn soil time to recover. Carver brought the peanut to Georgia.  Peanuts, but not cotton, are eligible for federal payments under the Price Loss Coverage (PLC) and Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) under the new Farm Bill. As a covered commodity — along with corn, wheat, oats, barley, etc — growing peanuts might even become more popular in South Georgia.

All of which makes it easy to understand why the peanut growers and the 200 or so Georgia companies that shell, roast, and otherwise add value to peanuts are feeling pretty good about their futures. March is National Peanut Month and tomorrow is Georgia PB&J Day at the State Capitol in Atlanta.  Sponsors will be handing out PB&Js, grilled PB&Js, country-friend peanuts, boiled peanuts and other goodies. They’ll also donate 18,720 jars of peanut butter valued at $ 56,160 to the Atlanta Community Food Bank.

Georgia’s $ 2 billion peanut industry will have no trouble finding takers for its products. There is no reason to think of them as anything but safe and nutritious. Yet, I do feel some discomfort with the fact that outside of the federal court room in Albany, South Georgia seems to have erased the PCA outbreak from its collective memory.

It’s also a reason why it’s important for a jury trial of the four former PCA executives to go forward this summer. The fact that the four are charged with a total of 76 federal felony count might make it more likely the PCA story will end up on a plea bargain.

But it has not happened yet, and the pre-trial hearing held this past week showed both prosecutors and defense attorneys taking every word or punctuation mark very seriously if it might have an impact on the trial.  The next big pre-trial hearing is scheduled for mid-April when farmers should be planting peanut kernels.  Forty days after that is when South Georgia should some alive with yellow flowers as the peanuts grow below ground.

It’s when those flowers bloom that we will probably know whether South Georgia is going to get a trial that it won’t forget.

Food Safety News

Georgia peach growers anticipating a good harvest

Georgia peach growers anticipating a good harvest

Peach trees at Lawson Peaches in Brooks County, GA are now in bloom, and work continues to get the crop ready for harvest.

“We hope we have no more sub-freezing temperatures,” said Irvin Lawson, Owner and Operator of Lawson Peaches. “We don’t want to lose ‘em like we did last year when it got down to 26 on March the fifth.”

Peach growers fell short of their ideal number of 800 chill hours, but the cold winter still provided them with enough for what they expect to be a plentiful harvest.

“We’re expecting a good crop…we ended up, February 28th with 752 hours. That makes just about everything we’ve got,” Lawson explained.

Now that the trees have bloomed, the crop is more vulnerable to cold temperatures. But Lawson says based on how the crop handled last week’s cold temperatures, he’s not worried.

“Last week when we got down to 29 degrees, most everyone of ‘em came through okay,” Lawson happily pointed out.

As long as the temperatures stay above freezing for the rest of the season, everything will be just peachy.

Source: walb.com

Publication date: 3/5/2014


FreshPlaza.com

Georgia Pecan Commission establishes Center for Pecan Innovation

The Georgia Agricultural Commodity Commission for Pecans, also known as the Georgia Pecan Commission, announced the establishment of the Center for Pecan Innovation to find new uses for pecans.

“Our initial focus will be new food products made from pecans, which is one of the most nutritious tree nuts,” John Robison, chairman of the commission, said in a press release. “The recent 30-year study from Harvard University showing that regular nut eaters were less likely to die of cancer or heart disease is just one more supporting voice for the center, which was established to encourage more companies to find ways to use pecans in their products.”

Robison, whose family-owned Robison Farms in Ailey, GA, still harvests pecan orchards planted in the 1920s by his grandfather, said the commission already is working with food development scientists at the University of Georgia to create new pecan products for the American market.

The commission also plans to coordinate with food companies that are interested in developing new uses for pecan pieces, oil and meal.

“In 2012, Georgia led the nation in pecan production, harvesting 100 million pounds for the domestic and global markets,” said Robison. “China is one of the biggest markets for our in-shell pecans, but there still is tremendous opportunity for companies to use pecan pieces – even the shells. The Center for Pecan Innovation will work to develop new products that use Georgia pecans.”

Georgia Department of Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black says the Georgia Pecan Commission is taking a creative approach to agriculture by establishing the center.

“Farmers today do far more than just grow food and fiber,” said Black. “They take an active part in promoting their crops to grow their markets, as we have done with our Georgia Grown program. The Center for Pecan Innovation is yet another step to increase awareness for Georgia pecans.”

The commission sees tremendous opportunities for biodegradable pecan shells, from roadbeds and packing material to bath products. Cosmetic companies are looking for natural products to replace plastic micro-beads in facial cleansers, and the Journal of Food Science reported that a new study shows that extract from pecan shells may be effective at protecting meats such as chicken from listeria growth.

“We are very excited about this opportunity for Georgia pecans,” Robison added. “We are reaching out to companies to see how we as growers can help them, and we are encouraging our growers to plant more trees to meet the growing market. We love pecan pies, but there is much more to pecans than pies.”

For more information about the Center for Pecan Innovation, visit www.americasnut.com.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Georgia Pecan Commission establishes Center for Pecan Innovation

The Georgia Agricultural Commodity Commission for Pecans, also known as the Georgia Pecan Commission, announced the establishment of the Center for Pecan Innovation to find new uses for pecans.

“Our initial focus will be new food products made from pecans, which is one of the most nutritious tree nuts,” John Robison, chairman of the commission, said in a press release. “The recent 30-year study from Harvard University showing that regular nut eaters were less likely to die of cancer or heart disease is just one more supporting voice for the center, which was established to encourage more companies to find ways to use pecans in their products.”

Robison, whose family-owned Robison Farms in Ailey, GA, still harvests pecan orchards planted in the 1920s by his grandfather, said the commission already is working with food development scientists at the University of Georgia to create new pecan products for the American market.

The commission also plans to coordinate with food companies that are interested in developing new uses for pecan pieces, oil and meal.

“In 2012, Georgia led the nation in pecan production, harvesting 100 million pounds for the domestic and global markets,” said Robison. “China is one of the biggest markets for our in-shell pecans, but there still is tremendous opportunity for companies to use pecan pieces – even the shells. The Center for Pecan Innovation will work to develop new products that use Georgia pecans.”

Georgia Department of Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black says the Georgia Pecan Commission is taking a creative approach to agriculture by establishing the center.

“Farmers today do far more than just grow food and fiber,” said Black. “They take an active part in promoting their crops to grow their markets, as we have done with our Georgia Grown program. The Center for Pecan Innovation is yet another step to increase awareness for Georgia pecans.”

The commission sees tremendous opportunities for biodegradable pecan shells, from roadbeds and packing material to bath products. Cosmetic companies are looking for natural products to replace plastic micro-beads in facial cleansers, and the Journal of Food Science reported that a new study shows that extract from pecan shells may be effective at protecting meats such as chicken from listeria growth.

“We are very excited about this opportunity for Georgia pecans,” Robison added. “We are reaching out to companies to see how we as growers can help them, and we are encouraging our growers to plant more trees to meet the growing market. We love pecan pies, but there is much more to pecans than pies.”

For more information about the Center for Pecan Innovation, visit www.americasnut.com.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Georgia Pecan Commission establishes Center for Pecan Innovation

The Georgia Agricultural Commodity Commission for Pecans, also known as the Georgia Pecan Commission, announced the establishment of the Center for Pecan Innovation to find new uses for pecans.

“Our initial focus will be new food products made from pecans, which is one of the most nutritious tree nuts,” John Robison, chairman of the commission, said in a press release. “The recent 30-year study from Harvard University showing that regular nut eaters were less likely to die of cancer or heart disease is just one more supporting voice for the center, which was established to encourage more companies to find ways to use pecans in their products.”

Robison, whose family-owned Robison Farms in Ailey, GA, still harvests pecan orchards planted in the 1920s by his grandfather, said the commission already is working with food development scientists at the University of Georgia to create new pecan products for the American market.

The commission also plans to coordinate with food companies that are interested in developing new uses for pecan pieces, oil and meal.

“In 2012, Georgia led the nation in pecan production, harvesting 100 million pounds for the domestic and global markets,” said Robison. “China is one of the biggest markets for our in-shell pecans, but there still is tremendous opportunity for companies to use pecan pieces – even the shells. The Center for Pecan Innovation will work to develop new products that use Georgia pecans.”

Georgia Department of Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black says the Georgia Pecan Commission is taking a creative approach to agriculture by establishing the center.

“Farmers today do far more than just grow food and fiber,” said Black. “They take an active part in promoting their crops to grow their markets, as we have done with our Georgia Grown program. The Center for Pecan Innovation is yet another step to increase awareness for Georgia pecans.”

The commission sees tremendous opportunities for biodegradable pecan shells, from roadbeds and packing material to bath products. Cosmetic companies are looking for natural products to replace plastic micro-beads in facial cleansers, and the Journal of Food Science reported that a new study shows that extract from pecan shells may be effective at protecting meats such as chicken from listeria growth.

“We are very excited about this opportunity for Georgia pecans,” Robison added. “We are reaching out to companies to see how we as growers can help them, and we are encouraging our growers to plant more trees to meet the growing market. We love pecan pies, but there is much more to pecans than pies.”

For more information about the Center for Pecan Innovation, visit www.americasnut.com.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Georgia Pecan Commission establishes Center for Pecan Innovation

The Georgia Agricultural Commodity Commission for Pecans, also known as the Georgia Pecan Commission, announced the establishment of the Center for Pecan Innovation to find new uses for pecans.

“Our initial focus will be new food products made from pecans, which is one of the most nutritious tree nuts,” John Robison, chairman of the commission, said in a press release. “The recent 30-year study from Harvard University showing that regular nut eaters were less likely to die of cancer or heart disease is just one more supporting voice for the center, which was established to encourage more companies to find ways to use pecans in their products.”

Robison, whose family-owned Robison Farms in Ailey, GA, still harvests pecan orchards planted in the 1920s by his grandfather, said the commission already is working with food development scientists at the University of Georgia to create new pecan products for the American market.

The commission also plans to coordinate with food companies that are interested in developing new uses for pecan pieces, oil and meal.

“In 2012, Georgia led the nation in pecan production, harvesting 100 million pounds for the domestic and global markets,” said Robison. “China is one of the biggest markets for our in-shell pecans, but there still is tremendous opportunity for companies to use pecan pieces – even the shells. The Center for Pecan Innovation will work to develop new products that use Georgia pecans.”

Georgia Department of Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black says the Georgia Pecan Commission is taking a creative approach to agriculture by establishing the center.

“Farmers today do far more than just grow food and fiber,” said Black. “They take an active part in promoting their crops to grow their markets, as we have done with our Georgia Grown program. The Center for Pecan Innovation is yet another step to increase awareness for Georgia pecans.”

The commission sees tremendous opportunities for biodegradable pecan shells, from roadbeds and packing material to bath products. Cosmetic companies are looking for natural products to replace plastic micro-beads in facial cleansers, and the Journal of Food Science reported that a new study shows that extract from pecan shells may be effective at protecting meats such as chicken from listeria growth.

“We are very excited about this opportunity for Georgia pecans,” Robison added. “We are reaching out to companies to see how we as growers can help them, and we are encouraging our growers to plant more trees to meet the growing market. We love pecan pies, but there is much more to pecans than pies.”

For more information about the Center for Pecan Innovation, visit www.americasnut.com.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Marketing efforts help Georgia peaches wrap up a very sweet season despite rainy weather

When people think of Georgia, they think of peaches. And while the Peach State has not been the nation’s top producer in many years volume-wise, when it comes to quality and name recognition, Georgia still earns its nickname. And this year’s Georgia peach season looks like it may have been one for the record books.

Each year, Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches between mid-May and mid-August. And despite above-average GA-Peaches-1Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches each year. This season was one for the record books, despite rain throughout July. rainfall during the month of July that hampered harvesting, the Georgia Peach Council said the majority of its members picked and shipped 90 percent of full-crop estimates.

“One of the biggest challenges in a wet summer is consistency, and we managed to have not only excellent consistency but excellent quality from start to finish,” said Will McGehee of the Georgia Peach Council. “Although a final tally is still being determined, from our standpoint as growers, 2013 will wind up being a great year.”

Increased marketing efforts by the Peach Council paid off in retail and media recognition for its “Sweet Georgia Peaches” program.

“All in all, we believe that our marketing and public relations efforts, combined with the sweet and delicious flavor and reputation of Georgia peaches led to an extremely successful 2013 season,” McGehee said.

For retailers, a “Georgia in July” marketing kit available for use by strategic partners in target markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest was a hit. The kit included point-of-sale merchandising display bins highlighting freestone peaches, Sweet Georgia Peaches farm market bags, recipes and nutritional information.

Retailers were also encouraged to share the Sweet Georgia Peaches Facebook app with consumers. It allows consumers to send a ‘virtual’ Georgia peach to sweeten someone’s day and can still be accessed by logging onto www.facebook.com/SweetGeorgiaPeaches.

On the consumer front, the council worked extensively to extend its awareness and education efforts from the Midwest to the East Coast. Registered dietitians promoted the versatility of Georgia peaches during televised healthy eating segments in select Southern markets. Sweet Georgia Peaches spokesperson and cookbook author Gena Knox appeared in cooking demonstrations for television stations in major Southeastern markets.

Social media played an increasingly important role in this year’s campaign. In addition to regular Facebook and Twitter posts throughout the season, the council created a YouTube channel to tell the story of Georgia peach farmers, many of whom are fourth- or fifth-generation farmers. A series of videos is available online that highlight the state’s peach producers, explain why Georgia peaches taste so sweet and provide consumers advice on how to pick the perfect peach.

To coincide with the YouTube channel launch and the first day of summer, the council scheduled Sweet Georgia Peach deliveries to television weathercasters in select cities. The result was a flurry of media mentions, as well as Facebook and Twitter posts showing pictures of meteorologists posing with their sweet treats.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines

Marketing efforts help Georgia peaches wrap up a very sweet season despite rainy weather

When people think of Georgia, they think of peaches. And while the Peach State has not been the nation’s top producer in many years volume-wise, when it comes to quality and name recognition, Georgia still earns its nickname. And this year’s Georgia peach season looks like it may have been one for the record books.

Each year, Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches between mid-May and mid-August. And despite above-average GA-Peaches-1Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches each year. This season was one for the record books, despite rain throughout July. rainfall during the month of July that hampered harvesting, the Georgia Peach Council said the majority of its members picked and shipped 90 percent of full-crop estimates.

“One of the biggest challenges in a wet summer is consistency, and we managed to have not only excellent consistency but excellent quality from start to finish,” said Will McGehee of the Georgia Peach Council. “Although a final tally is still being determined, from our standpoint as growers, 2013 will wind up being a great year.”

Increased marketing efforts by the Peach Council paid off in retail and media recognition for its “Sweet Georgia Peaches” program.

“All in all, we believe that our marketing and public relations efforts, combined with the sweet and delicious flavor and reputation of Georgia peaches led to an extremely successful 2013 season,” McGehee said.

For retailers, a “Georgia in July” marketing kit available for use by strategic partners in target markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest was a hit. The kit included point-of-sale merchandising display bins highlighting freestone peaches, Sweet Georgia Peaches farm market bags, recipes and nutritional information.

Retailers were also encouraged to share the Sweet Georgia Peaches Facebook app with consumers. It allows consumers to send a ‘virtual’ Georgia peach to sweeten someone’s day and can still be accessed by logging onto www.facebook.com/SweetGeorgiaPeaches.

On the consumer front, the council worked extensively to extend its awareness and education efforts from the Midwest to the East Coast. Registered dietitians promoted the versatility of Georgia peaches during televised healthy eating segments in select Southern markets. Sweet Georgia Peaches spokesperson and cookbook author Gena Knox appeared in cooking demonstrations for television stations in major Southeastern markets.

Social media played an increasingly important role in this year’s campaign. In addition to regular Facebook and Twitter posts throughout the season, the council created a YouTube channel to tell the story of Georgia peach farmers, many of whom are fourth- or fifth-generation farmers. A series of videos is available online that highlight the state’s peach producers, explain why Georgia peaches taste so sweet and provide consumers advice on how to pick the perfect peach.

To coincide with the YouTube channel launch and the first day of summer, the council scheduled Sweet Georgia Peach deliveries to television weathercasters in select cities. The result was a flurry of media mentions, as well as Facebook and Twitter posts showing pictures of meteorologists posing with their sweet treats.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines

Marketing efforts help Georgia peaches wrap up a very sweet season despite rainy weather

When people think of Georgia, they think of peaches. And while the Peach State has not been the nation’s top producer in many years volume-wise, when it comes to quality and name recognition, Georgia still earns its nickname. And this year’s Georgia peach season looks like it may have been one for the record books.

Each year, Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches between mid-May and mid-August. And despite above-average GA-Peaches-1Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches each year. This season was one for the record books, despite rain throughout July. rainfall during the month of July that hampered harvesting, the Georgia Peach Council said the majority of its members picked and shipped 90 percent of full-crop estimates.

“One of the biggest challenges in a wet summer is consistency, and we managed to have not only excellent consistency but excellent quality from start to finish,” said Will McGehee of the Georgia Peach Council. “Although a final tally is still being determined, from our standpoint as growers, 2013 will wind up being a great year.”

Increased marketing efforts by the Peach Council paid off in retail and media recognition for its “Sweet Georgia Peaches” program.

“All in all, we believe that our marketing and public relations efforts, combined with the sweet and delicious flavor and reputation of Georgia peaches led to an extremely successful 2013 season,” McGehee said.

For retailers, a “Georgia in July” marketing kit available for use by strategic partners in target markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest was a hit. The kit included point-of-sale merchandising display bins highlighting freestone peaches, Sweet Georgia Peaches farm market bags, recipes and nutritional information.

Retailers were also encouraged to share the Sweet Georgia Peaches Facebook app with consumers. It allows consumers to send a ‘virtual’ Georgia peach to sweeten someone’s day and can still be accessed by logging onto www.facebook.com/SweetGeorgiaPeaches.

On the consumer front, the council worked extensively to extend its awareness and education efforts from the Midwest to the East Coast. Registered dietitians promoted the versatility of Georgia peaches during televised healthy eating segments in select Southern markets. Sweet Georgia Peaches spokesperson and cookbook author Gena Knox appeared in cooking demonstrations for television stations in major Southeastern markets.

Social media played an increasingly important role in this year’s campaign. In addition to regular Facebook and Twitter posts throughout the season, the council created a YouTube channel to tell the story of Georgia peach farmers, many of whom are fourth- or fifth-generation farmers. A series of videos is available online that highlight the state’s peach producers, explain why Georgia peaches taste so sweet and provide consumers advice on how to pick the perfect peach.

To coincide with the YouTube channel launch and the first day of summer, the council scheduled Sweet Georgia Peach deliveries to television weathercasters in select cities. The result was a flurry of media mentions, as well as Facebook and Twitter posts showing pictures of meteorologists posing with their sweet treats.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines

Marketing efforts help Georgia peaches wrap up a very sweet season despite rainy weather

When people think of Georgia, they think of peaches. And while the Peach State has not been the nation’s top producer in many years volume-wise, when it comes to quality and name recognition, Georgia still earns its nickname. And this year’s Georgia peach season looks like it may have been one for the record books.

Each year, Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches between mid-May and mid-August. And despite above-average GA-Peaches-1Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches each year. This season was one for the record books, despite rain throughout July. rainfall during the month of July that hampered harvesting, the Georgia Peach Council said the majority of its members picked and shipped 90 percent of full-crop estimates.

“One of the biggest challenges in a wet summer is consistency, and we managed to have not only excellent consistency but excellent quality from start to finish,” said Will McGehee of the Georgia Peach Council. “Although a final tally is still being determined, from our standpoint as growers, 2013 will wind up being a great year.”

Increased marketing efforts by the Peach Council paid off in retail and media recognition for its “Sweet Georgia Peaches” program.

“All in all, we believe that our marketing and public relations efforts, combined with the sweet and delicious flavor and reputation of Georgia peaches led to an extremely successful 2013 season,” McGehee said.

For retailers, a “Georgia in July” marketing kit available for use by strategic partners in target markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest was a hit. The kit included point-of-sale merchandising display bins highlighting freestone peaches, Sweet Georgia Peaches farm market bags, recipes and nutritional information.

Retailers were also encouraged to share the Sweet Georgia Peaches Facebook app with consumers. It allows consumers to send a ‘virtual’ Georgia peach to sweeten someone’s day and can still be accessed by logging onto www.facebook.com/SweetGeorgiaPeaches.

On the consumer front, the council worked extensively to extend its awareness and education efforts from the Midwest to the East Coast. Registered dietitians promoted the versatility of Georgia peaches during televised healthy eating segments in select Southern markets. Sweet Georgia Peaches spokesperson and cookbook author Gena Knox appeared in cooking demonstrations for television stations in major Southeastern markets.

Social media played an increasingly important role in this year’s campaign. In addition to regular Facebook and Twitter posts throughout the season, the council created a YouTube channel to tell the story of Georgia peach farmers, many of whom are fourth- or fifth-generation farmers. A series of videos is available online that highlight the state’s peach producers, explain why Georgia peaches taste so sweet and provide consumers advice on how to pick the perfect peach.

To coincide with the YouTube channel launch and the first day of summer, the council scheduled Sweet Georgia Peach deliveries to television weathercasters in select cities. The result was a flurry of media mentions, as well as Facebook and Twitter posts showing pictures of meteorologists posing with their sweet treats.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines

Marketing efforts help Georgia peaches wrap up a very sweet season despite rainy weather

When people think of Georgia, they think of peaches. And while the Peach State has not been the nation’s top producer in many years volume-wise, when it comes to quality and name recognition, Georgia still earns its nickname. And this year’s Georgia peach season looks like it may have been one for the record books.

Each year, Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches between mid-May and mid-August. And despite above-average GA-Peaches-1Georgia produces more than 130 million pounds of peaches each year. This season was one for the record books, despite rain throughout July. rainfall during the month of July that hampered harvesting, the Georgia Peach Council said the majority of its members picked and shipped 90 percent of full-crop estimates.

“One of the biggest challenges in a wet summer is consistency, and we managed to have not only excellent consistency but excellent quality from start to finish,” said Will McGehee of the Georgia Peach Council. “Although a final tally is still being determined, from our standpoint as growers, 2013 will wind up being a great year.”

Increased marketing efforts by the Peach Council paid off in retail and media recognition for its “Sweet Georgia Peaches” program.

“All in all, we believe that our marketing and public relations efforts, combined with the sweet and delicious flavor and reputation of Georgia peaches led to an extremely successful 2013 season,” McGehee said.

For retailers, a “Georgia in July” marketing kit available for use by strategic partners in target markets throughout the Southeast, Northeast and Midwest was a hit. The kit included point-of-sale merchandising display bins highlighting freestone peaches, Sweet Georgia Peaches farm market bags, recipes and nutritional information.

Retailers were also encouraged to share the Sweet Georgia Peaches Facebook app with consumers. It allows consumers to send a ‘virtual’ Georgia peach to sweeten someone’s day and can still be accessed by logging onto www.facebook.com/SweetGeorgiaPeaches.

On the consumer front, the council worked extensively to extend its awareness and education efforts from the Midwest to the East Coast. Registered dietitians promoted the versatility of Georgia peaches during televised healthy eating segments in select Southern markets. Sweet Georgia Peaches spokesperson and cookbook author Gena Knox appeared in cooking demonstrations for television stations in major Southeastern markets.

Social media played an increasingly important role in this year’s campaign. In addition to regular Facebook and Twitter posts throughout the season, the council created a YouTube channel to tell the story of Georgia peach farmers, many of whom are fourth- or fifth-generation farmers. A series of videos is available online that highlight the state’s peach producers, explain why Georgia peaches taste so sweet and provide consumers advice on how to pick the perfect peach.

To coincide with the YouTube channel launch and the first day of summer, the council scheduled Sweet Georgia Peach deliveries to television weathercasters in select cities. The result was a flurry of media mentions, as well as Facebook and Twitter posts showing pictures of meteorologists posing with their sweet treats.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines