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Interest rises domestically and internationally in California datesSupplies of dates out of California are looking relatively strong.
“We are able to supply customers with high-quality Medjool dates year-round,” says Hope Barbee of Coachella, Ca.-based Double Date Packing. Barbee notes that the new harvest has just begun for both the conventional and organic Medjool dates. “This is a time known for a bump in sales,” adds Barbee, noting Double Date’s date ranches are located in Coachella and Bard Valley, Calif.
In the U.S., dates are only grown in the California and Arizona area, though sales are increasingly on the rise within the country as well as outside of it. “Domestic and international sales are up,” she says. “And retailers are seeing a 50-60 per cent increase in Medjool date sales for the current year.” That, she notes, is largely coming from the education that date growers are pushing to teach customers about the health benefits of the fruit.
Setting apart quality
What is challenging for growers such as Double Date though is distinguishing itself as a quality date. “Consumers are searching for quality Medjool dates,” Barbee says, noting Double Date is working on a new product at the moment, though details are remaining under wraps for now. “The biggest challenge has been for people to understand that a date is not just a date. There are many quality levels in the market, consumers and buyers alike have begun to pay attention to the quality.”
For more information:
Double Date Packing
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