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Olathe-area sweet corn on tap for Ringer & Son brokerage

Although Olathe-area sweet corn handled by Ringer & Son brokerage in Commerce City, CO, will be reaching consumers somewhat later than normal this year as the result of a cool growing season, the summer treat remains one of Colorado’s more anticipated crops.

According to the sales staff at Ringer, a fruit and vegetable operation that handles a full variety of product from Colorado and other growing regions, shipments of yellow, white and bi-colored sweet corn from Delta, CO, grower Mike Ahlberg & Sons will likely begin the third week of July.

Ringer President Joshua Johnson will head sweet corn sales this year. Other Colorado items such as onions, cantaloupe and watermelon from the Arkansas Valley will be handled by sales agent Gene Schneider. The Ringer sales team also will be moving Western Slope peaches along with greens and vegetables grown north of Denver along Colorado’s Front Range.

Colorado product represents a significant portion of the brokerage firm’s sales during summer months. But the decades-old company also handles product from the West Coast, Northwest, Southeast, Texas and Mexico.

Though it has long handled Vidalia onions, this spring saw Ringer bring in its first-ever load of organic Vidalias as part of a program that includes both non-storage and storage onions. Ringer sources from all regions, and during early summer, product was coming out of Washington and Texas.

Agents Deb Pate and Dayn Borgmann work sales as well, moving tomatoes from Florida and Nogales, citrus from Texas and apples and potatoes from the Northwest.

This season, with its spate of cool weather across the West and Northwest and rains in the South, had seen tightened supplies, although Mr. Johnson said that movement was increasing as the season deepened.

Ms. Pate was working limes, cabbage, onions and mixed chilis out of Texas, where she said movement had been good. Weather, however, was also a factor earlier in the season for crops in Mexico, with field tomatoes and tomatillos most severely affected.

Greenhouse tomatoes coming through Nogales were a deal-saver, according to Mr. Schneider. While Mexico lost a large percentage of its field crop, greenhouses were producing beefsteak, cherry, grape and Roma tomatoes.

And Mr. Borgmann said that California crops such as peppers, field greens, scallions and citrus were moving well, although cherries and stone fruit were coming off later.