LINDSAY, CALIF. – LoBue Citrus today announced that Heritage Reserve™ Navel Oranges—a flavor-driven, limited-run navel program—will begin shipping February 22, 2012.
Heritage Reserve navels are grown within a unique sub-section of California’s renowned Central Valley citrus growing region. The groves were first planted between 1898 and 1960 to the original Washington-variety bud wood, and have never been replanted.
Two critical factors account for the sustained productivity of the groves: a micro-climate and sandy soils unique to their growing region—a narrow, 20-mile long area adjacent to the western foothills of Sequoia National Park; and decades of consistent farming practices aimed at nurturing optimal flavor.
“Sustained by LoBue cultivation practices, these mature trees naturally provide a consistently exceptional flavor experience,” commented Rick Osterhues, vice president of sales and marketing at LoBue Citrus. “We had an overwhelmingly positive response from both retailers and consumers last season, and expect similar results this year because these navels are truly fantastic.”
Last year, select retailers who carried Heritage Reserve enjoyed a significant boost in the navel category. From January to April 2010, one Northwest retailer who offered Heritage Reserve in bulk only increased total navel orange category sales by 35%, while one Southeast retailer reported sales 80% over expectations in both bagged and bulk fruit.
Heritage Reserve Navel Oranges are naturally colored (never gassed). They are taste-tested daily, graded tightly for optimal flavor, and packed to order.
Supplies are expected to be available through April, and in slightly higher volume (despite restricted acreage)—enabling LoBue to extend the Heritage Reserve program to more markets this season than in previous years.
About LoBue Citrus
Founded in 1934, LoBue Citrus is a third-generation, year-round full-service grower, shipper and packer of citrus products, including navel oranges, specialty citrus, lemons and juice.
Source: LoBue Citrus