Blog: Plant Your Dream!
by YourEnchantedGardener

A little SoCal locally grown Strawberry history

A little SoCal locally grown Strawberry history,

Date:   5/26/2017 12:03:26 PM   ( 4 y ) ... viewed 737 times

Spent time with Stephen Clark at North Park, San Diego farmers market held each Thursday, 3-7 pm.

J R Organics CSA Farm produce is located right at the corner of the 30th street on north park way.

Strawberries, that I called the Love Berries, are in the peak of the season right now and generally available throughout the year thanks to mastery of the organic growing techniques.

Strawberries are one food that should always be purchased organically due to commercial pesticides.

The Rodriguez Family strawberries have a rich history in Southern California agriculture as I was telling Stephen.

Back into 2005, I became aware that a lot of strawberries went unsold.

I asked my friends at Whole Foods Market Hillcrest if I could bring into the store some of the strawberries from the nearby Hillcrest Farmers Market. This became a regular project of mine for about two months.

I would gather up strawberries that went unsold and bring them into the store where they were displayed in a prominent place.

Please were fresh picked that day strawberries and highly aromatic at times. Customers were stunned by the difference between these locally grown fresh picked berries and what are what was normally sold.

At the time Carolyn Kates worked as part of the in-store marketing team, we were great friends and she always said yes to my ideas.

It was really a lot of extra work for the produce department to have me coming in like that.

Amazingly, the words are "locally grown" were not being used at that time. Those strawberries began a marketing trend called locally grown,

At the time, I would travel up to for the orange county area. There was a wild oats store in the neighborhood I visited I noticed they had in enormous large signs that said locally grown in front of the store.

This marketing came from the corporate level down.

I went in to congratulate the produce manager about having locally grown produce. He pulled me aside and asked, what does locally grown mean? The idea was really very new at the time!

In a very real sense, it was the Rodriguez family strawberries that began the locally grown marketing trend.

Around that same time I was the photographer for the Organic Trade Association and the Organic center or at the yearly VIP fundraising events.

I cleared the way for the Rodriguez berries to be featured at these events
it was through bringing the berries that I made friends with @jim Tripp, the head of Aramark at the Anaheim Convention Center. As the historic photo below tells, around the same time that I gave Jim the Rodriguez Family Love Berries, I also gave him a couple baby herb plants, and a copy of the document I wrote called, A Love Letter to Joe The Farmer. Fast forward about 15 years. The Anaheim Convention Center now has its own rooftop garden and grows herbs. It is one of the top sustainability convention centers in the nation! None of that existed on the day I met Jim!
All this is why I say #plantyourdream!!!



Leslie Goldman #YourEnchantedGardener #PlantYourDreamBlog

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