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Two new sales people join the team at Sandia Distributors

NOGALES, AZ — Sandia Distributors Inc., here, has hired two new sales people to replace Gabe Nuñez and Steve Damon, who are no longer with the company.

"We brought in Bobby Peraza, who was over at Borg, and we brought in Luis Hanna, who was over at Del Campo," said Bill Spence, sales manager, on Nov. 10. Both new hires had started about a month earlier.

Danny Carosilva continues on the sales desk at Sandia, along with Mr. Spence.

“Whenever you bring in two now people like that, especially two in one season, it is usually a positive thing in that you start talking to new accounts and it sparks new ideas,” Mr. Spence said. “We are excited. We have high hopes for them.”

With hard shell squash being a major category for Sandia, the company was already well into the new season. “We are really busy right now. We're getting quite a bit of product,” particularly Acorn, Butternut, Spaghetti, Banana and Kabocha squash. “We have been going for about a month or so, and we are really right in the middle of it right now,” he said.

“We start zucchini tomorrow” as well as yellow squash and gray squash, he continued. “By the end of the month, we will be into hot peppers and both white and yellow corn.”

Bell peppers and corn will both go “probably through March,” he said. Those are coming from southern Sonora, “the Obregon deal and a little bit further south.” The squash will continue probably the end of April, with production moving from Sonora down into Sinaloa and then back up to Sonora for the spring deal.

In its melon program, Sandia had a fall watermelon deal out of the state of Chihuahua, Mexico, that had “just finished up here about 10 days ago.” That product crosses the border at Demming, NM, and is sold out of Demming, Mr. Spence said.

Also, “we just finished up some honeydews” from Caborca, Sonora. “We started earlier than most people” on the honeydews, in early September, and also finished earlier than most. “We will be back with those in the spring,” he said.

Sandia also handles Persian limes. Those come out of Jalisco in central Mexico and are available year round, he said.

All of the company’s programs are about the same as in the past, Mr. Spence said. “From a planting standpoint, we try not to vary too much. We don’t usually go more than 200 to 400 acres up or down” from one season to the next, and this year “I don’t think we are going up or down. In fact, I think it is almost exactly what we had last year,” with the same acreage for the same items. “We really try to stick to a program that has worked for us, and this year is no different.”

Some people have a tendency, he said, to get “overly excited” after a profitable season “and plant more” for the next year. That generally “seems to be a mistake” because others also “are in that frame of mind” and it results in production excesses “that don’t pay off.” There is “a lot of talk” that some of that has happened in Mexico this year, but in the end, whether the volume of product that goes to market proves to be an oversupply or not “will depend on what kind of weather” is ahead, both in Mexico and in competing production areas such as Florida. If crops are reduced from, for example, a normal yield of 2,000 units an acre down to, say, 800 units an acre, there will be no surplus. That is “really a hard one to call.”

But for Sandia, the game plan is generally to stick to the same basic acreage from one season to the next, regardless of what markets were like the prior season he said, and “we have found that this works for us.”