Veg-Fresh Farms Teases New Squash Variety and a Tight Market
- by Chandler James
CORONA, CA - It seems that every time I visit a grocery store, a new variety of squash catches my eye while traversing the produce department. Most recently on my squash scout, the honeynut variety came to light, which is Veg-Fresh Farms’ newest variety according to Chris Jacoby, Sales Director. Ranging from red, orange, yellow, and green (do I see blue and purple squash in my future?), squash truly embodies categorial diversity—and the honeynut variety is no exception.
“There has been great interest in the new organic honeynut variety and we expect good movement as it is tastier and smaller than the butternut squash. It’s like the butternut ‘mini me,’” Chris began. “It will join our lineup with acorn, butternut, delicata, kabocha, red kuri, and spaghetti organic squashes later this year.”
All of Veg-Fresh’s product is currently sourced from Mexico, since the California/Oregon season doesn’t start until the fall. However, planning is already in the works and the grower will be starting its fall program earlier than last year, with it set to begin in mid-August.
“Prices this year are up a bit due to increased labor costs in California, but we are trying to keep those to a minimum—consumers shouldn’t be affected,” Chris began. “As for demand, it is definitely up. There is now more interest in eating organic squash especially for the Delicata, Red Kuri, and Kabocha varieties.”
With growing operations in Hollister, California, and Clackamas, Oregon, Veg-Fresh is looking forward to consistency in sizing and quality that will rival that of years prior.
“Currently, the market is tight again. The Mexico season that we are currently in has seen some delays due to the cold and rain,” said Chris. “However, for our big fall organic program, weather is usually ideal and consistent since the organic squash is grown in California. During the fall, we will have promotional volume.”
I’m still holding out for some blue and purple squash, but until then, we’ll keep you updated on all of the latest news in fresh produce.