Catalán Family Farm
14 acres in Hollister, about 100 miles from the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market.
Maria, Julio, Alex, Juan, and Ana Catalán, along with 2 part-time employees.
California Certified Organic Farmers since 2005
Maria Catalán got her start farming at the Rural Development Center (now ALBA) in Salinas, and started her family farm operation in Hollister in 2001. During María's childhood in the Mexican state of Guerrero, her grandfather grew melons and other foods to feed the family; María wanted to pass both the delicious food and the knowledge on to her four children. María believes that children, whether or not they intend to be farmers, should know how to raise their own food in a way that respects the air and the earth. In order to promote this philosophy, the farm partners with Northern California high schools and universities to bring students to the farm to work, eat home-cooked Mexican food, work at markets, and get a sense of farming life in a Latino community.
The Cataláns manage problems with pests such as cucumber beetles, earworms, and aphids by planting pest-resistant crops, providing habitat for beneficial insects, and rotating crops.
The Cataláns maintain the fertility of their clay soils by adding compost and planting cover crops.
An allotment from the local irrigation district provides the water for the Cataláns' drip irrigation and sprinkler systems.