Representing a $5 million investment, the new facility will create 250 new jobs

GRAHAM COUNTY, AZ (February 13, 2024) – NatureSweet, the largest vertically integrated agricultural company in North America and the #1 snacking tomato brand has added another location to their portfolio of greenhouse facilities and has begun planting and growing produce in Bonita, Arizona located in Graham County.

The leading produce grower plans to hire about 250 agricultural workers over the next three years and invest over $5 million in the facility alone, which will have a multiplying effect on Arizona’s economy. This investment marks the expansion of growing operations into the US for the brand which is well known for growing fresh and delicious tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers. NatureSweet celebrated the ribbon cutting today alongside officials from Graham County, City of Safford, City of Willcox, Graham County Chamber of Commerce, the Arizona Commerce Authority, industry and community leaders.

“Arizona is proud to celebrate NatureSweet’s new production facility in Graham County,” said Governor Katie Hobbs. “With this investment, NatureSweet will create hundreds of quality jobs in rural Arizona and strengthen Arizona’s important agriculture industry.”

“Choosing Arizona to plant our seeds is more than just a strategic decision, it’s a commitment to innovation, collaboration, and the incredible opportunities that the state offers,” said Rodolfo Spielmann, President & CEO of NatureSweet. “We look forward to contributing to the area’s dynamic landscape and growing a successful future together. We are just starting.”

NatureSweet which has become well known for their snacking and cherry-on-the-vine tomato varieties, will start operations by growing D’Vines, flavorful cherry tomatoes that are harvested and packaged on-the-vine for maximum freshness, to then expand to other conventional and organic products throughout 18 hectares (more than 44 acres), of greenhouse space at the Bonita facility. The more than five-million-dollar investment from the greenhouse leader will stimulate economic growth in a rural, underserved area of southern Arizona, fostering sustainable development and opportunities for local communities.

“I am thrilled to see NatureSweet make such a significant investment here in Graham County,” says Arizona Congressman Juan Ciscomani. “Because of our skilled workforce and innovative business environment, Arizona has been one of the best places in the country to do business for decades. It’s exciting to see NatureSweet recognize all that Graham County has to offer and put their roots in our community for years to come.”

“Today’s ribbon cutting represents a significant win for rural Arizona and Graham County,” said Sandra Watson, President and CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority. “We are grateful to have an innovative industry leader like NatureSweet in Arizona, creating quality jobs while driving further economic growth in our rural communities.”

NatureSweet, is headquartered in Texas with facilities in Mexico and Arizona. The company is the largest Controlled Environment Agricultural company in the world to be B Corp, Fair Trade, and EFI Certified.

 

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About NatureSweet® (NS Brands, Ltd.)

NatureSweet® is the single-source solution for greenhouse-grown vegetables and is the #1 best-selling brand in snacking tomatoes. The largest vertically integrated agriculture company in North America, NatureSweet guarantees great tasting produce year-round, both organic and conventional. Our vegetables are carefully grown, harvested, and packaged by more than 6,000 directly employed company Associates. NatureSweet tomatoes, cucumbers, and sweet peppers are handpicked at the peak of freshness and sold at major supermarket retailers throughout the United States, Mexico, and Canada. NatureSweet is dedicated to having a positive social, environmental, and economic impact within our communities, and our commitment is to transform the lives of agricultural workers throughout North America. This work, as well as our efforts regarding sustainability, have led us to earn B Corp, Fair Trade, and the Equitable Food Initiative (EFI) certifications.

 

About the Arizona Commerce Authority

The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) is the state’s leading economic development organization with a streamlined mission to grow and strengthen Arizona’s economy. The ACA uses a three-pronged approach to advance the overall economy: attract, expand, create – attract out-of-state companies to establish operations in Arizona; work with existing companies to expand their business in Arizona and beyond; and help entrepreneurs create new Arizona businesses in targeted industries. For more information, please visit azcommerce.com and follow the ACA on Twitter @azcommerce.

 

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