For more than three decades, Sun World researchers have worked diligently to develop new and more flavorful fruits and vegetables. Beginning this month, they now have a new home from which to breed, assess and introduce new produce varieties.
Sun World International LLC recently announced the (virtual) grand opening of its Center for Innovation, a sophisticated new fruit breeding and genetics facility located in Wasco, California, just north of this central California farming community. The company is best known for introducing consumers worldwide to many dozens of new produce items, including its iconic branded table grapes, plums, apricots, peaches and nectarines as well as seedless watermelon, colored peppers and vine-ripened tomatoes. Sun World’s previous breeding work was conducted at the Company’s longstanding and nearby Variety Development Center.
The company began planning and designing the new facility two years ago and broke ground on it in August 2019. Its new Center for Innovation sits on a 160-acre campus, includes an ambitious 17,000 square foot building and houses an expansive experimental research farm, laboratories for molecular breeding, embryo rescue, seedling transfers and post-harvest assessment, as well as grow rooms, greenhouses and spacious fruit tasting facilities for new grape and stonefruit varieties. It also features well-appointed offices for its area staff along with conference space and a functional outdoor event venue.
The Innovation Center is dedicated in memory of Sun World founder Howard P. Marguleas, an agriculture industry luminary who had a profound impact on the American produce industry. “My father’s notable passion for introducing consumers to unique and flavorful new fruit and vegetables was legendary. As such, we thought it was particularly fitting to dedicate this extraordinary new facility in his memory,” Sun World Chief Executive Officer David Marguleas noted. “This passion to innovate continues to shape our vision and guide our business philosophy and will enable us to bring growers, retailers and consumers an even wider array of new fruit for many decades to come,” he added.
“We are intentionally thinking big, and long-term. This facility will house much more than the table grape and stone fruit breeding programs we currently operate. We have bold plans to expand into developing other crops that delight consumers,” VP of Variety Development Terry Bacon said.
For more information:
David Marguleas Sun World
Tel: +1 (760) 456-7092