Bella Viva Orchards
49 acres in Denair, about 110 miles from the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market.
Victor Martino along with 4 full-time and 2 part-time employees.
Global Culture; in 2009, 100% of the farm will be certified organic. All of the Martinos' land is currently farmed in accordance with organic standards. Bella Viva’s fruit drying process is not certified organic because of the addition of sulfur, a natural preservative.
The Martinos have been farming since the 1940s. The family has a long history of selling directly to consumers: they were among the farmers who helped start the Alemany Farmers’ Market, the first modern farmers' market in San Francisco, in the early 1940s. The Martinos pick all fresh fruit the day before it is sold at market and dry their fruit on the farm, giving them complete control over the quality of the final product. Victor, a third-generation farmer, began the transition to organic production in 2003.
Victor creates habitat for beneficial organisms, and uses pheromone disruption, certified organic pesticides, selection of resistant varieties.
Built with cover crops, crop rotation, compost, organic fertilizer, and aged manure.
Micro sprinklers, flood and drip irrigation with water from the Modesto Irrigation District and the Hetch-Hetchy reservoir.
Hand and machine cultivation.