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Summer Stock: Watermelon


Hessmer, LA-based grower-shipper Earl Roy Enterprises, LLC BB #:299773 is known for its sweet potatoes but carries a full line of fruits and vegetables all year.

Managing member Cynthia Vead says one commodity in particular is a significant summer draw: watermelon, though she says it’s getting to be a year-round crop too, with imports.

She says Earl Roy’s domestic season “usually starts about mid-April with heavy sales until Labor Day,” noting two of the bigger sales opportunities are Mother’s Day and Memorial Day.

Despite surges in the summer months, Vead says both watermelon and tomatoes see “consistent” sales all year, but “you sell more melons and cantaloupe in the summer than other fruits.”

This is true for Jonnathan Cordon, business development manager for Nashville, TN-based wholesaler Mid-South Produce Distributors, LLC BB #:152766. “Summer months are the busiest,” he agrees. “We bring in a lot of peaches and watermelon.”

In terms of watermelon, Cordon cites the Sugar Baby variety—large, seedless, and very sweet—as a top seller. He mentions more walk-in business during the summer months as well, with buyers looking to stock roadside stands.

Mid-South Produce also sells to many smaller supermarkets in the area.

This an excerpt from a spotlight feature in the May/June 2022 issue of Produce Blueprints Magazine. Click here to read the whole issue.