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Double D Farms succeeds through hard work

doubledfarms It’s shaping up to be an exciting year for Double D Farms Organics for a few reasons, not the least of which is the introduction of its new logo.

“We were selling our organic products under Devine Organics and someone, unbeknownst to us, trademarked that Devine Organics label,” said Don Devine, owner of Fresno, CA-based Double D Farms Organics. “We’ve had Double D Farms since the mid-80s, so we decided that since we couldn’t use Devine Organics, we would have two Double D labels — Double D Farms for its conventional vegetables and then Double D Farms Organics for its organic initiatives.”

Double D Farms Organics is a grower, packer, and shipper that is dedicated to sustainable and innovative organic approaches to produce. Among its main products are conventional and organic asparagus, which it grows in California and Mexico.

“We want to be, for the items that we can be, a year-round supplier, that’s what we’re trying to,” Devine said.

The company is also a player in onions, sweet corn and some garlic, which it grows for Christopher Ranch.

As the second half of 2020 approaches, Double D Farms Organics has a lot to be excited about, including the start of the sweet corn season, which was expected to begin around June 12. That’s just the start of what the season has to offer.

“We’re currently harvesting onions,” Devine said. “We’ve expanded into more conventional asparagus in Mexico and we’re going to start in Baja on June 15. We expect those ranches that we’ve developed to be able to produce asparagus in Baja 10 months out of the year.”

Devine said the company is committed to the products it grows year in and year out, including broccoli and celery, because it’s hard to know which new items might trend.

“We just stay with our basic items and we’re looking at some other items to expand into, but we haven’t made a decision as to what we’re going to do there,” he said. “Our company philosophy is to grow products that fit for our climate and soil types. Our philosophy is to try to grow the best and the most nutritious products that we can grow.”

The company has had its hurdles this year, including COVID-19.

“We tested everybody, we take their temperature when everybody comes to work,” Devine said. “We ask questions, like ‘Do you have a cough?’ We follow the rules established by the CDC and we work around it.

“The biggest impact it had was that COVID-19 really shut down foodservice, so all of our products got squeezed —along with so many others —  into retail. It was just too much product going in too small of an area, and it really negatively affected the prices we were getting.”

Another challenge the company faces involves water supply, because California is implementing groundwater regulations that will further limit the availability of water.

“We’re looking to do more in Mexico because we don’t have those challenges there,” Devine said. “We have challenges but not the extent that we have them in California.”

Devine and his wife, Elvia, take pride in their company being family-owned.

“Our children are involved in it and hopefully I’ll live long enough to see our grandchildren involved in it,” Devine said.

Also essential to Double D Farms’ success are its employees, many of whom have worked for the company for many years, and who the Devines say are like family to them.

“We’re going to be here for the long run, we’re going to do the best job we can, we’re going to produce the best products we can,” Devine said. “We’re a grower-pack-shipper, so we have skin in the game on everything that we produce. I think that helps us be unique because a lot of our competitors aren’t growers, they merchandise product. We’re the guys who put the seed in the soil, put the fertilizer in, put the water on it. We’re the guys who oversee the harvest, and we’re there and it’s a family operation.”

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