inside costco Delicious tomatoes and more, year-round
windsetfarms.com) in Santa Maria, California, to see how greenhouses work and why they’re so important in providing us with tomatoes and other top-quality vegetables year-round. Greenhouse glories
Consumer reporter Pat Volchok
gives a behind-the-scenes look at
Costco products and services. Send
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WHO WOULD HAVE thought that something as simple as the grape tomato could have
such a fascinating, complex story behind it?
These are the delicious, bite-size tomatoes you can find in Costco’s produce section.
They’re always beautiful—in ripeness, color,
firmness and taste, ready to throw in a salad
or a recipe or just as a healthy snack—
throughout the year. Mother Nature really shows her
It turns out she gets a lot of help. Costco’s
grape tomatoes are grown in greenhouses,
where plants are nurtured in a rich environment, enjoying the best of nature (namely
sunshine) while being protected from the
worst (storms, bugs and more). The Connection
visited one operated by Windset Farms ( www.
ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF WINDSET FARMS
The best of nature
Santa Maria is situated in California’s
Central Coast region, where the cooling
northern winds mingle with the state’s southern heat to create a climate that, on average, is
neither very hot nor very cold. And that’s
exactly why Windset chose the location for its
newest greenhouse, explains Steve Newell,
who operates the family-run business with his
brother, John, and a brother-in-law, Jeff Madu.
The massive, impressive glass building,
two-plus stories high, covers 64 acres—that’s
Windset Farms’ greenhouse
covers more than 64 acres,
the size of 50 football fields.
90 ;e Costco Connection AUGUST 2012