Homegrown Organic Farms' Stephen Paul Discusses Peach Season and Stonefruit Demand
- by Laura Hillen
PORTERVILLE, CA – As its organic stonefruit program continues to expand across the board, Homegrown Organic Farms is currently ramping up to start its second season of California peaches.
“I’m very excited about our second season of peaches. They’re all wonderful yellow peach varieties of big and beautiful California peaches,” Stephen Paul, Category Director, tells me of the company’s current crop.
Stephen says that the season started and stayed very intense with elevated volume until the end of last month, with supply expected to remain steady through mid-October with the later varieties. Homegrown Organics says its crop will remain bountiful as long as weather permits.
“I expect the market is going to remain steady as the season goes through October, with prices staying around mid to upper 20s, and in some cases lower 30s,” Stephen says. “I’m optimistic because I know California produces an amazing piece of fruit, and there is thriving demand for the organic sector.”
The company is focusing on tapping in on retailer needs for merchandising this season in order to deliver an optimized product.
“Our motto is to listen, learn, and deliver. This year we’re focusing on learning what POS materials retailers want and are working with them to achieve their goals, because they’re the ones working with the customer,” Stephen tells me.
Stephen says the company’s stonefruit program has consistently grown year-over-year due to new growers and partnerships, including Homegrown’s partnership with The Giumarra Companies. The arrangement, penned last year, gives Homegrown access to the Nature’s Partner brand of DulceVida stonefruit varieties to grow them organically.
“This was our first year with DulceVida volume, and we expect the program to continue in growth and maturity to fill our late-summer timeframe,” Stephen says of the diversity the partnership adds to Homegrown.
Stephen says that the company also has its eyes ahead on the next season as the company plans to launch new varieties of stonefruit to answer growing consumer, and retailer, demand.
“Our organic Asian Pear program will see a significant increase in volume next year with the addition of six or more varieties,” Stephen finishes. “This will allow our program to run from mid-July through mid-November.”
As Homegrown Organic Farms continues to expand its stonefruit program, and supply this year’s retailers and consumers with beautiful California peaches, AndNowUKnow will have the latest in handpicked industry announcements.