Manzana Products holds a deep appreciation for heritage Gravenstein apples coupled with an eye to the future for organic apple products and sustainability. North Coast, Manzana’s own brand, is proud to be an annual sponsor of the Gravenstein Apple Fair. “The Gravenstein is the apple that made Sebastopol,” explains Mark Fitzgerald, General Manager of Manzana Products, producer of organic apple products located in Sebastopol. “The Gravenstein Apple Fair is a very important event in this community. It’s our heritage crop.”
Fitzgerald reflected on past philosophy that led the company to its current environmental awareness in apple cultivation and production. “It’s all about the environment first. Most of our employees live in the area and we all want to live the healthiest lives possible. Organic apple orchards are a part of that environmental consciousness. Our wastewater is recycled on-site, the apple pomace is picked up daily by local farmers to feed their organic livestock, and we have plans to increase our use of solar power to 80%. We have people that walk by our plant and ask us what we do or how it’s going,” Fitzgerald offered. “It’s a great feeling when they say, ‘We’re glad you’re still here! Keep it going!’ ”
Dave Whitbeck, Director of National Sales for North Coast, appreciates the global trend towards organic and non-GMO products. “We are seeing our North Coast organic apple juice, apple sauce, and apple cider vinegar increase in popularity across the nation. People, especially mothers, appreciate the health benefits of organic foods. The fact that our products are also non-GMO, BPA free, Kosher and made only with apples from the western US points to North Coast’s commitment to creating the best possible product for our customers”. North Coast is also committed to keeping their Gravenstein apple juice and apple sauce readily available to consumers across the US. The Gravenstein apple is highly aromatic and the perfect balance of sweet and tart.
Alissa Trinei, Marketing Manager for North Coast, proudly described the benefit of working for a company in which she truly believes in. “Being born and raised in Sebastopol and lucky enough to remain here spending my days promoting the North Coast brand, it really is a dream. Our products are far superior than the competition, made without added sugar, preservatives or flavorings. The ingredients for our juice and sauce are just organic apples, it’s as simple as that!”
Another year as a major sponsor of the Gravenstein Apple Fair, Trinei explains the underlying importance of this community event stating, “Unless you’re in the apple business, you can watch the orchards being replaced with vineyards and think ‘Wow! What an amazingly beautiful place we live in.’ True as it may be, the realization that not only are the Gravenstein apples disappearing in Sonoma County but all apples are set to disappear at this rate, it’s a tragedy. Some of our apple growers here in Sebastopol have been raising apples for 4-5 generations, it’s hard to watch these families try to figure out what they will do next. Some are already invested in grapes, only time will tell what will happen to the rest.” She ends by saying, “Hopefully the Grav Fair will stay forever. It’s a time where we can all come together and celebrate our beloved heirloom apple. Like they say, it really is the sweetest little fair in Sonoma County, if not far beyond…..”.
North Coast Organic apple products are made in Sebastopol, CA from U.S. grown certified organic apples. They contain no added sugars, preservatives, colorings or flavorings.