California Prune Board Authorized to Continue for Another Five Years
The California Prune Board was recently authorized to continue for another five years. This followed a successful public hearing where growers and processors voted unanimously to support the board. In addition to five years of achievements, California prunes have done very well through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Donn Zea is the Executive Director of the California Prune Board.
Zea… “The COVID-19 pandemic has been a huge challenge for the food business, particularly if you have heavy exposure in food service. We have some food service business, but it is definitely not our mainstay. Being a consumer packaged good, being that we're tunneled dried, and that it also goes through a steam, almost like a pasteurization process before being packaged, is a kind of pinnacle of the food safety chain, if you will. And yes, as people decided that they wanted to eat healthy, to try to remain healthy, they bought a lot of prunes. Our sales have been way up domestically and in some cases in certain markets, particularly Japan, which was already our largest export market, sales have spiked considerably.”
California is the world’s largest producer of prunes providing about 40 percent of the world’s supply and more than 90% of the U.S. supply. Today, there are more than 40,000 bearing acres of California Prune orchards concentrated in the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys.