Mucci Farms expands by over 200 acres in North America
By Mucci Farms (edited)
By Mucci Farms (edited)
Mucci Farms is making major expansions in Kingsville, Ont. and Huron, Ohio totalling 206-acres over the next two years.
“Demand for greenhouse grown produce is growing rapidly as consumers continue to put pressure on the food industry to prioritize food safety, sustainability, responsible growing practices and clean growing environments,” said CEO Bert Mucci.
According to Mucci, these investments support their ongoing emphasis on maximizing local and regionally grown fruits and vegetables year-round through expansion and lit culture grow light technology.
The first year of expansions include bell peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, and their award-winning strawberries that are grown in the largest controlled climate strawberry farm in North America.
“Our berry program has been a big success and we believe it’s because of the quality and flavour we are able to provide through a clean growing environment, sustainable growing practices and our proximity to market,” explained Joe Spano, VP of sales and marketing. “Since we aren’t importing from California or Florida, we can maximize sugars by allowing product to be fully ripe before we harvest.”
The second year will focus exclusively on bell peppers with a 100-acre expansion to accommodate a growing need for supply in the category, which is being done through expansion as well as technology.
“We have seen a strong rise in demand for locally grown peppers in recent years and expanding our own supply reduces our reliance on partner growers and imports,” said Mucci. “We are currently trialing lit culture grow lights for our Pepper program which will be a game changer that allows us to grow local peppers 365 days a year.”
Plans for by acreage and commodity expansion include 25 acres of tomatoes-on-the-vine in Huron, Ohio, 30 acres of bell peppers in Kingsville, 36 acres of strawberries in Kingsville, 15-acres of mini-cocktail cucumbers, and 100 acres of bell peppers at a new site in Kingsville with construction beginning in 2022
Additional projects include a dedicated research and development facility to be ready in 2021. “We have over 300 varieties of various commodities being trialed at any given time,” stated Danny Mucci, President of Sales and Marketing. “Our trial program includes non-traditional greenhouse grown items such as zucchinis, blackberries and melons and we have a healthy appetite for new innovative varieties.”