After 16 years in the organic farming business, Braga Farms is a name that is still going strong.
This proud, family-owned business boasts 40 acres of pistachios, and also markets produce from local organic farmers, organic jams, trail mixes and gift products that grace the shelves of more than 45 Northern California stores, as well as stores in Seattle and other locations as they continue to expand.
It all began in the Braga kitchen, inspired by the family’s love of pistachios and their passion for providing top notch certified organic, GMO free produce.
It was in that kitchen that Mike, his wife Julie, and their three sons Jeff, Doug and Dennis, began roasting nuts, which they would then market at the Clovis Farmer’s market.
“Our three sons were attending Fresno State at the time and we thought it would be good to teach them how to sell by being in the Old Town Clovis Farmers Market on Friday nights,” says Mike.
However, the quality of these products quickly became evident as business soon picked up. To satiate this rise in demand, the family began selling on Amazon.com and created their company website, www.BuyOrganicNuts.com. They converted their garage into a packing facility to accommodate their growing business.
That was just the beginning of Braga Farms’ success. In July 2009, they expanded a second time to their 10668 Road 26 1/2 building, where their business remained for a short time.
Currently, the Braga family is branching out yet again to a new building, on the corner of Granada Drive and Mitchell Court, where they expect to open their doors to the public by August.
“Our current facility is in our orchard next to our house in Madera County,” Mike said. “We needed to separate the processing and the retail packaging for food safety concerns. We had the opportunity to purchase the lot at Mitchell Court a few years before construction started since our current location is down a dirt road. We needed to have a place that is more accessible and having the benefit of city services. By being in the city, it gives us the opportunity to have a showroom to showcase our product line and allow customers to sample the assortment of organic fruits and nuts we sell online.”
The new location will offer prepackaged goods, samples, and will be a place where customers can come in and see all of the products that the company has to offer. They will be able to order gift items and have them shipped anywhere in the United States.
Some of the items the Bragas will offer in their store include gift packages (such as tins), custom trail mixes which can be tailored to the customers’ liking while they are in the store, organic olive oil, organic jam, organic nut butter, organic candy, dried fruit, including raisins and cranberries. During the holidays the store will offer organic chocolate nuts and gift baskets, which customers come in can customize.
Braga Farms is a business that proves through its actions that it not only cares about its customers’ health, but about our environment as well. Every order is packed and shipped directly from the farm, guaranteeing the freshest produce available. Also, Braga Farms’ packing facility is 80 percent solar powered.
“We sell only high quality certified organic dried fruits and nuts and, as a grower, we are one of the few companies that sell directly to the consumer under our own brand,” Mike said.
Braga Farms products may be purchased online by visiting their website www.BuyOrganicNuts.com, on Amazon.com, and at Northern California Whole Food Stores including their Fresno location.