Fresh Talker



Stocked and Ready
for Thanksgiving Eats

What happened to October? We are on the threshold of Thanksgiving and it seems like time has been flying over the last few weeks. So before any more time slips by, here’s the scoop in fresh produce:

Apples and pears are old news, but still excellent quality. The Honeycrisp, Opal, Kiku and Pink Lady apples are among my favorites at this time of year. But I do have to mention the Granny Smith because if apple pie is on your holiday menu, it’s a great choice. And we still have a wide selection of Northwest-grown pears to

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It Looks a Lot Like Fall
in our Produce Markets

Our Produce Markets are full of the dark reds, deep greens and orange tinges of autumn.

The Northwest’s autumn apple and pear season is well under way with several varieties to choose from in both conventionally farmed and certified organic.

Fuji Apple

The Fuji – my personal favorite.

My favorite fall apple is the Fuji. I like the sweeter varieties when it c

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Hatch Chiles
On Their Way and
Other Seasonal Goodies

hatch chile 3Hatch chiles arrive in the markets this coming week (Wednesday or Thursday – sign up for our “This Just In” emails and you’ll be the first to know!).

This year we will have both organic and conventional farmed chiles to choose from. Each market will have a weekend roasting event – weather permit

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Rain Calls Abrupt Halt
to Hayton Strawberries

It’s raining pretty good up in Skagit County this morning, bringing a swift end to the local strawberry season from Hayton Farms.

We had an excellent season this year and I hope you were able to enjoy them often over the past three weeks. Unfortunately the early start (May 23) meant an early end this year. Hayton Farms does have organic red raspberries and blackberries that are just now ramping up, but with the rain, their availability may be hit or miss over the next few days. These berries are picked fresh each day and delivered the following morning after they have had several ho

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Quick! Local Berries
Picked Fresh Daily

Strawberry single for facebook

The local strawberry season is very sweet – and very short!

Local strawberries – picked fresh and delivered daily from Hayton Farms in Mount Vernon – are here!

Locally grown strawberries are as swe

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NW Berries Nearer
as we Move into May

Berries. The last time we talked, I said I thought we were out of the woods on California strawberries. I was wrong.

Black and Rasp BerriesWe have continued to struggle with cool, wet weather in California strawberry fields. In particular, it’s been difficult to get the quantity we would like to hav

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Weather Cooperates
for California Crops

Lots of promising fruit-and-weather news this week: It’s the very beginning of berry season, we’re looking at great grapes, early asparagus, promising cherries and, thanks to trees taking their proper winter naps at long last – an excellent stone fruit season.

It looks like we’re finally coming into a good period when it comes to strawberries. We’ve struggled this year with the weather – it’s been holding back California strawberries. But I think we’re out of those woods and should see good quality and supply over the next several weeks.

In blueberries, we’re o

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Cara Caras, Asparagus
& an Early Berry Report

Asparagus for TJI - Copy

 

We’re on the downward side of the Tango mandarins that we talked about last time and, as promised, the Nugget mandarins have arrived in all of our markets. They are the peak of their flavor.

This mandarin honors the saying “Ugly is only skin deep” – or is that “Beauty i

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Trip to California
Centers on Citrus

I was on a plane this past week to visit the California citrus-growing region near Visalia. It was a great trip and proved there are many things still to learn – even after 35 years in this business!

California has been in a long and severe drought, so it was great to see all the snow in the mountains as we flew in. It was a stark contrast with last year’s lack of snowpack – in fact, it looks like they’ve been getting  their fair share at last, and that is a good thing! It is not going to completely fix the drought situation, but it sure helps.

Of course, snow in the mo

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Plenty of Challenges
in Berries and Citrus

We’ve been spoiled with good weather and an early start to the California strawberry season for the past couple of years. But not this year, which is why we haven’t been able to provide fresh strawberries over the past few weeks.

The few available old-crop strawberries have been fair at best – I’m not sure they even deserve being served no matter how deep the whip cream or other topping you could try to bury them in.  We check every day, and had hoped the new-crop strawberry season would be well under way by now. But we suffered another setback Tuesday, Jan. 5, when yet another

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