YUMA, Ariz. - Ag tours show visitors how produce goes from the field to your table.
The Field to Feast tour through the Yuma Visitor's Bureau teaches people about food safety and allows them to harvest their own crops in the field. One bag of food goes to our local food bank and another goes home with them.
“I think it’s a unique opportunity to see what goes on here in the winter," said one winter visitor, Mary Drake. "I had so much fun, we got broccoli and cauliflower and beets and had a chance to walk through all the aisles and see everything that's growing, it was just amazing,” she said.
Yuma City Administrator, Greg Wilkinson was also on the tour.
"I think it’s a good time coming out here in the field and being able to look at all the crops in the field and talk to a few of the winter visitors that are coming from out of town,” he said.
Many people on the tour were surprised to see how different vegetables look in the fields than how you see them in the grocery store.
“We could barely find the cabbage with all the leaves, but it looks so fresh I can’t wait to eat it when we get home,” Drake said.
Every tour there is a different grower who teaches the guests about agriculture in Yuma. On this tour was Chris Clayton from Mission Ranches.
There were many things most people who live in Yuma might not know about what's happening in our own backyards.
For example, Clayton talked about how Kale, unlike other vegetables can be harvested up to five times.
"So basically with the kale what you’re harvesting off is just the leaves and as you are harvesting the leaves you take the older leave so the plant grows taller and it grows more leaves so you come back through about every six weeks and to pull more leaves off," he said.
Another interesting fast about growing produce in Yuma is that cantaloupes are grown facing the south side of the bed for frost protection.
Also, the only crops being transplanted in Yuma are celery, cauliflower and Fennell. This means they start in a greenhouse and then are transplanted to the field as they continue growing.
Did you know that over 1000 trucks leave Yuma every day fanning out all across America? And that most of the derm wheat we grow here goes straight to Italy for pasta production?
These were just some of the tidbits that the guests learned during this tour.
After the group picked their own crops they went to the Arizona Western College where there culinary program cooked a meal made from the freshly harvested produce.
“It is terrific, we got sunshine and fresh fresh food and we picked it this morning ourselves," said one winter visitor, Jr Reding. "It is delicious and well prepared," he added.
For more information on upcoming agriculture tours go to VisitYuma.com