Monday, April 3, 2017

Spring 2017 Update

The following pictures were taken in the coast of Hermosillo district in the state of Sonora, Mexico on March 31, 2017. 
Cantaloupe vines are healthy and vigorous

Styrofoam plates are placed under each melon

Honeydew harvest will begin after Easter

Vines provide adequate shade for melons

Watermelon harvest will begin the week of April 10

Hot peppers are developing well

Hot peppers

Friday, September 30, 2016

Vandervoet and Associates Fall 2016 update

Update on Fall Melon deal out of Sonora, Mexico

The following photos were taken on the Coast of Hermosillo district on September 28, 2016. The region experienced high winds and rainfall on September 7th due to Hurricane Newton, but since has had excellent weather for melon production. 

Watermelon harvest is just around the corner

The watermelon harvest will last through November and into December

Jalapeno Pepper

Honeydew Melon flowers

Early stage of Honeydew melon

Melons are healthy and clean

Friday, April 1, 2016

Vandervoet and Associates Spring 2016 Update

Field Update- Spring, 2016

The following pictures were taken on March 30, 2016 in the agricultural district to the west of Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico, colloquially referred to as the "Coast of Hermosillo". 

Honeydew Fields are developing well. There is currently "6 count" size fruit on the vine.

Seedless Watermelon fields are showing a strong first set.
Jalapeno Pepper plants are strong. As the vine grows, subsequent sets occur higher up.
Jalapeno flower, from below.
As Jalapeno plants develop, additional posts and support line will be added.
Seedless Watermelon pollination in action. Our watermelons are not pollinated using hormonal sprays.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Spring 2015 Melon Update

Update on Spring, 2015 Honeydew crop out of Caborca, Sonora.
Harvesting is predicted for the first week of May. During the upcoming production cycle, the farm will be audited for Fair Trade certification. This will be in addition to GlobalGAP certification that the location (Campo Puebla) has obtained for the last few years. In previous seasons the farm operated with a Rainforest Alliance certification, which ensured both biodiversity as well as sustainable livelihoods for employees.   

Protective tunnels ensure that young melon vines will get a healthy start. Rows are weeded regularly.
Initial flowering and pollination (via wind)  begins while vines are still covered in protective tunnels.

Monica- the namesake of the Monica's Pride honeydew melon label. 
Brian Vandervoet inspects progress of Honeydew melon vines

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Field Update- Spring 2014

Spring 2014 Crop Update

Field Updates from the growing regions of Caborca and Hermosillo, Sonora

Following Photos taken February 27, 2014

Melons are protected from potential freezing temperatures by the "tunnels" shown below. The tunnel also provides protection from birds that could disturb the seedlings. 

The following photos show the same plants, on April 14, 2014 after the tunnels have been removed. 

 Melons are maturing with extremely clean exterior.

The round section at the base of the flower illustrates a successful pollination. These melon plants will produce fruit for the next few months.

Watermelon production is healthy, with vigorous vines. Sizing will be large to start. Photos from April 15th.

There will be plenty of fruit to come in the next few weeks.

Cantaloupe fields are strong. Every melon has a styrofoam plate underneath, to prevent direct contact with soil. You may notice 4 faint marks on our melons. This is a sign that they sat on these plates.

The growers we represent make continuous efforts to improve the conditions for field workers. New restrooms and washing areas were constructed recently, illustrated below. All sinks have hot water. These improvements are part of the social responsibility aspect of the Rainforest Alliance certification carried by the Monica's Pride label melons.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Fall 2013 Melon Crop Update

Field Update- Caborca, Sonora, Mexico
Photos taken on September 25, 2013

Honeydew melon harvest has started out of the Caborca district in northwestern Sonora. This region of the Sonoran Desert will continue to have warm days (into the 90s) with little chance of rain through most of October, insuring optimal conditions for melon production.

Melon vines are growing vigorously. Field crews insure that
vine leaves cover fruit to prevent sunburn and sun spots.

Early plantings have fruit on the vine nearly ready for harvest.
Later plantings are growing aggressively, with healthy flowers and tendrils

The smoother the skin, the higher the sugar

Monica's Pride label Honeydew and Orange Flesh
melons are grown by Carlos Terminel in Caborca, Sonora.

Reviewing field conditions.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Spring 2013 Melon Crop

Field Update- Hermosillo, Sonora. Spring 2013.
Photos in this post were taken on Tuesday April 30, 2013. 

We have begun shipping seeded and seedless watermelon from Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. 

Mature fruit cut- waiting to be picked up and taken to packing shed.

Pick crew inspects melons and removes mature fruit from vine.

Field Crew collects mature watermelons in trailer, and takes them to packing shed.

Cantaloupe and Honeydew Melons are right around the corner.

For food safety purposes, each cantaloupe melon is placed on a styrofoam platform.

Fruit is sizing well and vines are vigorous.

Healthy vines mean strong fruit. You will notice 4 tiny indentations on our melons, due to the positioning of the fruit on the styrofoam platform.

Honeydew sizing will start out large.

Honeydew fields are healthy.