Reflections of 2023
Little offers a more obvious opportunity for a clean slate than the flip of a calendar page into a fresh, shiny new year. The chance to reflect on the past while contemplating the future simultaneously. In our case, as the calendar turns to January 2024, we find ourselves officially in our centennial year. Leading up to this milestone anniversary has presented us with many occasions to reminisce over the past hundred years; an entire century, four decades, four generations. In some ways it’s an impressively long time – certainly for companies who by many accounts only 1% of survive to celebrate this momentous occasion – in other ways, it’s a blink in time.
Established in 1924 by our four founding fathers, this little company that does big things has demonstrated a determination that rivals the little engine that could. We’ve long since claimed the coveted title of being the largest grower/shipper of artichokes in North America. And the knowledge and perseverance that got us here perfecting growing these challenging, fickle vegetables continues to drive us to develop, produce, grow, and harvest green, purple and baby artichokes that are considered the gold standard and are highly sought after by consumers nationwide.
Three of our founders came here from Italy landing in Castroville, California and bringing with them the knowledge, passion, and work ethic from the motherland to grow artichokes – quite possibly the most challenging vegetable to master.
This area in Castroville provided the perfect trifecta of SUN – but in a temperate climate, SOIL – that is both fertile and nutrient-rich, and FOG – which provides moisture and natural air conditioning to the fields in which we grow our masterpiece artichokes. And so it began back in 1924…
We recognize what makes us able to produce premium products is our people. Yes, it all starts with a seed – and we have an impressive program developing and using the finest seed varieties. And there’s the processes, of course, which we’ve been developing, practicing, and honing for a century now. But at the end of the day what really makes up a company is its people and processes. At least those are the two most prized possessions. And when you have the best of both of those things, it’s hard to fail.
Especially when you add in the passion, skills, endurance and spirit of those who have led us, directed us, challenged us, and grown us over the decades since we began this venture. These leaders have evolved our knowledgebase, developed our breeding program (patenting several varieties along the way), established multiple growing regions, produced and procured the best facilities, machinery and equipment, and made Ocean Mist Farms a known and regarded brand among customers (retailers and foodservice) and consumers alike.
That’s no small feat.
So as we reflect over the past hundred years on a macro level, we also pause to reflect over the past year on a micro level. And we are left feeling an overwhelming sense of gratitude. A sense of pride mixed in with a heavy dose of humility. And it’s that gratefulness that fuels us to continue to do what we do.
We recognize and thank all of our employees – past and present – from the coolers and yards to the fields and offices. We thank our valued customers and consumers who have put their faith and trust in this company and our brand for a century now.
We will continue with our promise to do everything we can to produce and provide the finest, safest, most wholesome, and flavorful fresh vegetable products in the marketplace.
Wishing you all a very happy, healthy and enjoyable new year!