We pioneered packaged salad
No really, we did! In 1989 we were the very first to package and nationally distribute fresh-cut, ready-to-eat salad.
Lettuce plants are very delicate. These tender leafy vegetables don't grow just anywhere. They grow best in a climate with moderate temperatures, not too hot or too cold. We carefully select each of our seasonal growing regions so that we can grow your favorite lettuces to their maximum potential, year round.
Georgia is well known for its fertile red soil and the Moultrie area is no exception. “We Grow the World All Year Long” is Moultrie’s slogan. Set in a country landscape in the Southern Rivers part of Georgia, this major growing region is dotted with quiet, serene lakes.
Moultrie is one of our primary cabbage-growing regions. With the area’s moderate temperatures, we are able to harvest cabbage here in summer and winter months.
We’ve been growing in this area since the early 2000s. By growing in Moultrie, GA, Fresh Express can deliver our produce quickly to our southeast packaging facility. This close proximity decreases our trucking miles, which is better for the environment and for getting our southern consumers their salads fast and fresh.
Located in the central coast region of California, this bountiful stretch of land is where our story began back in 1926. Because of its ideal climate and fertile soil, the Salinas Valley, referred to as the Salad Bowl of the World, is where a large percentage of the nation's lettuces are grown. Cradled between the Gabilan and Santa Lucia mountain ranges and carved out over time by the Salinas River, this beautiful valley is truly a gift from Mother Nature.
Bruce Church, the founder of Fresh Express, started his agricultural career in 1926 in the Salinas Valley, where he was an innovator from the start, developing projects and partnerships to improve seed development, new farming practices and transporting produce, to name just a few. Our passion for growing the most flavorful fresh lettuce began here.
The Salinas Valley is our primary growing region. The mild year-round climate allows us to grow here for the majority of the year. We harvest our lettuces from this beautiful valley from April to November.
This is where we spend our winters. Tucked away in the very southwest corner of Arizona, you’ll find sunshine, clean air, majestic vistas, and beautiful rows of fresh lettuce. Yuma lies in the Sonora Desert, framed by rugged mountains, irrigated by the Colorado River, and flooded with sunshine almost every day of the year. Known as the Winter Lettuce Capital of the World, Yuma produces the majority of the fresh lettuces you eat during the winter.
Yuma’s mild winter weather makes it ideal for our winter growing season from late fall to spring, November to April. Other areas might be too cold during these months, but Yuma’s temperatures are just right for growing your favorite leafy greens.
Central and Southeast Florida is known for its rich black soil. It’s no wonder agriculture is a major occupation in the various growing regions throughout the Everglades. We selected Belle Glade, Okeechobee and Mt. Dora in Florida to supplement our primary winter-spring growing in Yuma, Arizona.
We grow our lettuces and cabbage in central and southeast Florida to supplement our primary winter growing in Yuma, Arizona. The Florida growing season typically lasts from December to May, and that’s when we make the most of the mild temperatures, rich soil, and perfect growing conditions around Belle Glade, Okeechobee, and Mt. Dora in Florida.
We began growing lettuce in Belle Glade in 2007 to supplement our continuous supply of fresh lettuces in the winter months, and because of the southeastern U.S. location, we were able to cut thousands of transportation miles in one year. Decreasing our trucking miles means we can deliver our fresh lettuces quicker, and reduce our carbon footprint too.
Located in the state of Guanajuato, the growing region of El Bajio sits on a plateau surrounded by the Sierra de Guanajuato Mountains. El Bajio is a major agricultural area in Mexico and a primary lettuce-growing region. All of our Mexico growing and harvesting practices follow the exact same strict standards that we use in the U.S.
By adding this growing region, we supplement our supply of fresh lettuces in the winter. We typically grow from fall through spring, October to June.
We began growing lettuce in El Bajio, Mexico in 2006 to supplement our supply of fresh lettuces in the winter. By adding this growing region, we were been able to cut 623,584 transportation miles in 2010. Decreasing our trucking miles means we can deliver our fresh lettuces quicker, and reduces our carbon footprint as well.
Within the great Central Valley of California in Fresno County lies the small farming town of Huron. We spend part of the spring and fall in Huron when the weather is best for growing fresh, flavorful lettuce.
The climate in Huron is ideal for growing lettuces in the spring from March through April, and again in the fall from October through November.
We began growing and harvesting in Huron because of its ideal spring and fall weather, providing us with an additional plentiful supply of lettuces in the spring and once again in the fall, as we transition between our main growing seasons in Salinas Valley and Yuma.
Being served by major waterways and railroads, and later by paved highways and major airports, this area became a prime growing region since first being settled and developed before the Revolutionary War.
For us, the Inner Banks of North Carolina is primarily a cabbage-growing region. Since this crop can grow well in colder temperatures, we can harvest not only during summer months of May to July, but also again in the winter from December to January.
The San Luis Valley, known as the Largest Alpine Valley in North America, is larger than Rhode Island, Delaware, and Connecticut combined. Surrounded by the rugged peaks of the Southern Rockies and irrigated by the Rio Grande River, the San Luis Valley is the most extensively cultivated and irrigated region in the world.
The summer months in the San Luis Valley are as close to perfect as you can get. The air is cool and dry, while the sun is warm. This is why so many visitors come to this alpine valley to cool off from summer's heat and humidity.
We grow in the San Luis Valley area to supplement our summer and early fall harvests. We are here approximately July to September. We began growing lettuce here in 2005. By adding this growing region, we were able to cut transportation by hundreds of thousands of miles. Decreasing our trucking miles means we can deliver our fresh lettuces quicker and reduce our carbon footprint.
Located in the southeast corner of California, The Imperial Valley is “where the sun spends the winter,” which is why we also spend winters here. Between the sun and the irrigation from the Colorado River, farmlands are able to flourish on this desert terrain. With the Palo Verde Mountains rising in the northeast, it’s not surprising that the name means “befitting an emperor or an empress.” It’s certainly befitting delicious lettuce.
Bruce Church Company started growing in the Imperial Valley in the 1930s, around the same time that Yuma, AZ was starting to grow lettuce. Today, the Imperial Valley still works perfectly as a supplement to Yuma throughout the winter months.
Ohio is described as the “Heartland of America” or “Hometown, USA.” Such nicknames refer to the rustic feeling of rural life, which is predominant in this area. Elmore, on the banks of the Portage River, and Pandora, on the banks of the Ottawa River, are villages in Northwest Ohio, the Buckeye State. This part of Ohio, covered by glaciers during the ice age, was covered with wetlands prior to the early 1800s, contributing to a nutrient-rich topsoil, perfect for highly productive farming.
One main difference is Ohio’s growing season is considerably shorter than California’s -- but this isn’t a concern, since cabbage thrives in cold temperatures, thus extending the growing season. We grow cabbage here from June to November.
In the northwest corner of New York State, just south of Lake Ontario, there are two picturesque villages -- Elba in Genesee County and Stanley in Ontario County. The name “Genesee” comes from the Iroquois word for “beautiful valley.” Stanley is a small village in Ontario County on Genesee River, which flows into Lake Ontario. Neighborly spirit and working hard are the traits that fill these towns with community pride.
Northwest New York’s growing season for cabbage is June to November. This growing region supplements our supply of red and green cabbages for Fresh Express salads and coleslaws.