The Sunshine State is where Publix began. And today, it continues to provide many of the fruits and vegetables that we carry throughout the year, thanks to its tropical and subtropical climates. From citrus to strawberries, from green beans and eggplant to hot and sweet peepers, Florida is a true agricultural powerhouse—particularly in the winter months, when many other states are too cold to yield produce. The growing season varies and typically lasts from December through April. Here are just a few of the Florida growers we work with:
Grower Javier Torres grew up accompanying his father to farmers’ markets, where his enthusiasm for flavorful tomatoes started. Tomato Thyme is a family-owned and operated company that specializes in the growing, packing, and shipping of tomatoes and strives to provide customers with the best quality available.
Sizemore Farms has a four-generation legacy rooted in Plant City strawberries. Today, they are an integrated agricultural operation that grows, cools, sells, and ships from 500 acres of strawberries each season. They work hard to ensure they leave the land better than they found it, so that they can pass their cherished tradition of farming to generations to come.
Mack Farms is an independent, family-owned farm that grows, packs, and delivers fresh potatoes and seedless watermelons to Publix. Founder Arnold Mack began growing watermelons in 1967, and fresh new crop potatoes in the mid-1980s. Mack Farms produces some of the first potatoes of each new year, called winter potatoes.
Duda Farm Fresh Foods
Duda Farm Fresh Foods is in its sixth generation of family ownership and operates farms across the United States, including Belle Glade Farms, a 27,000 acre-farm at the edge of Lake Okeechobee. They are committed to producing the freshest-quality produce while reducing their environmental footprint. In 2012, they installed 2100 square feet of solar panels at their fresh-cut celery facility. In addition to celery, Publix sources radishes, corn, and lettuce from this farm.
TKM Bengard Farms, LLC
In the late 1990s, lettuce grower Tom Basore teamed up with his longtime friend, Tom Bengard of Bengard Ranch, to form TKM Bengard Farms. Being one of few lettuce growers in Florida, they have experienced strong demand, and they are well known for their quality. They are a family farm currently managed by Tom Basore’s sons: Tom Jr., Brian, Toby, Kevin, Michael, and Stephen.
See our sourcing philosophy to understand where Publix gets our produce—and why.