Rancho Vasquez avocado farm shares rich history in SoCal: 'It's family and with family comes trust'

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Friday, September 16, 2022
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Members of the family-owned Rancho Vasquez in Azusa are celebrating three generations of growing avocados, and they say the secret is family: "With family comes trust."

AZUSA, Calif. (KABC) -- Rancho Vasquez is a local family-owned and operated business dating back three generations.

Originally, they harvested organic avocados to supply the Vasquez family restaurant.

Since then, it's grown into an organic avocado orchard, located on more than 100 acres of land in the foothills of Azusa, where the Vasquez family still resides.

Art Vasquez has been harvesting avocados as far back as he can remember, with his grandfather teaching him how to take care of the trees.

He also learned some very early business skills.

"My brother and I would pick the avocados, put them in the back of a wagon and take them to town, knocking on doors, selling avocados," said Art Vasquez.

Many years later, avocados were still part of his life.

He and his wife bought two acres of land next door to the original family farm.

"On weekends, I'd pick avocados and my kids and I would take them and sell them to restaurants. Finally, in 2002, I'd saved up enough money and purchased 123 acres."

"We used to just be the fruit pickers," said Damien Vasquez. "Now our family runs it."

On the ranch, harvest time is a family affair with children and grandchildren and more sharing of the family tradition of organic fruit growing.

"It's family and with family comes trust," said Art Vasquez. "That a family farm is still alive and still breathing here in Southern California is a big deal."

"Hopefully our kids take with we started and run with it," said Damien Vasquez. "We don't want them just to do what we did. We want them to put their own touches on it. I would love to see the next generation keep going with it and expanding on it."