Bland Farms Continues to Lead Innovation
Glennville, Georgia, September 19, 2018 – Bland Farms, located in Glennville, Georgia and one of the largest growers and shippers of sweet onions, continues to lead innovation in the farming industry. For Delbert Bland and his family, farming is a way of life. Bland Farms has been instrumental in growing the Vidalia® brand including being the first to successfully incorporate Vidalia® sweet onions into processed foods and a mail order business in the late 1980’s introduced the Vidalia® name to markets west of the Mississippi River.
Today, Bland Farms represents a large portion of the overall Vidalia® crop. Recognizing and acting on the rising demand for sweet onions, Delbert expanded production outside of the Peach State, both domestically and internationally including Texas, California, Peru and Mexico. These strategic growing partnerships have proven themselves to be extremely valuable, allowing Bland Farms to supply sweet onions year-round.
Bland Farms utilizes numerous storage facilities for their products, many of them in remote locations. A new computer monitoring system allows for the team to better manage the temperature and humidity at the storage facilities by receiving alerts via cell phone when adjustments need to be made. This allows for more precise monitoring as well as the ability to expedite corrections.
Sorting of the products has also changed dramatically at Bland Farms where a unique high-speed sorter allows for customized orders, often filled the same day. Sorting is programmed by weight, size, color and external appearance by this unique machine. The machine can take 20 pictures per onion, 10 per second and sort quickly and efficiently. This allows Bland Farms to better meet the needs of their customers by providing customized orders in a timely manner.
Although planting and harvesting is still done by hand, Bland Farms was one of the first to move from bags to boxes in the field during harvest. They changed collections from 50lb bags to bin boxes that are then transported via forklift through the process of field to facility, allowing for less handling of the onions, resulting in less bruising. Delbert Bland was also the first in the industry to use a high graphic label box and the first in the industry to apply PLU stickers on onions.
Bland Farms has always been and will continue to be a leader and innovator in farming. Delbert and team continue to seek out changes to better meet the needs of their customers and to provide a better quality product.