Sun Produce, founded in May 2017, is a member-owned cooperative supporting small-scale farm viability and easy consumer access to fresh, healthy and local produce. At the Co-op's annual meeting on Dec. 15, 2019 it was proud to welcome the following new members:
Carol Diemer, University of Arizona Cooperative Extension - AZ Health Zone (Food and Agricultural Marketing Expert / FAME class member);
Marina Acosta, University of Arizona Cooperative Extension - AZ Health Zone - (Food and Agricultural Marketing Expert / FAME class member);
The Farm at Agritopia - Grower class Member
Prescott Valley Farmers Market - Buyer class Member
Metro Tech High School - Buyer class Member.
The Co-op thanks Stewart Jacobson, AZ Dept. of Agriculture and Rita French, Mayo Hospital Executive Chef for their service as they step down from the Board of Directors. And welcomes new board members Marina Acosta, U of A Extension; Herbert Smith, Metro Tech High School; and Erik Stanford, Pivot Produce. Please visit this web site's 'About' page to see a full board listing and more.
The Co-op FarmRaiser program currently operates at 4 sites around the valley - Concordia Charter School, Town of Gilbert, Tracy Dempsey Originals and Metro Tech High School. Recently added restaurant / catering customers include Sifted and Persepshen! And we are excited about the continued and expanded partnership with Pivot Produce, a distribution company sourcing from small-scale farms around Pima and Cochise Counties. Because the growing seasons vary slightly from one part of the state to another, this partnership allows co-op customers some additional volume and variety of produce that may not be available in central Arizona, and provides Pivot customers in southern AZ with items that are available in central AZ. And, now having the chance to work with the Prescott Valley Farmers Market creates a similar situation - Sun Produce is able to provide items out of season in our neighboring county to the north. Hopefully when the growing season is on in Yavapai County the co-op will be able to offer items not available in Central and Southern AZ
Finally, through a visionary project led by Jilliann Feltham, co-chair of Production for the Arizona Farm to School Network, from mid-April to mid-May Sun Produce growers will be able to provide 5,000 lbs. of riotously colored and amazingly tasty rainbow carrots to 50,000 school children in 5 central Maricopa County school districts!
The co-op is ever-grateful for your support and belief in the importance of keeping smaller-scale producers on the land. From our hearts to yours we wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous new year!