U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue tours Mastronardi Produce, Coldwater, MI, on April 3, 2018. Original public domain image from Flickr
Here he sees employees adjust the height of tomato vines to bring the fruit to an easily pickable height, founded by Umberto Mastronardi more than 60 years ago, the fourth generation of the Mastronardi family owns and manages a year-round operation of greenhouses that produce tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers. Vine-ripened produce is harvested by hand when possible. The greenhouses use modern technology and sustainable growing practices to reduce the impact on the environment (i.e. they use one-tenth the water of a conventional grower). Their second phase of greenhouses use diffused glass, energy curtains, grow lights to help in the winter months, automated harvest carts for ergonomic harvesting, recycled water and fertilizer, and a rainwater irrigation system. USDA Photo by Lance Cheung. @USDA @USDAgov @SecretarySonny.