Tractor in Field

The Power of Knowing Your Farmer

Behind every piece of food you eat — not to mention many of the clothes you wear, the carpets you walk on, and the bandages you use when you’re injured — is a farmer. Knowing the source of so many of the things we rely on every day and the food that keeps us alive is crucial to supporting the farmers that make it possible. Without them, we’d be in bad shape. 

In the spirit of #KnowYourFarmer, we’re here to share more about the farmers that make Gills Onions possible and encourage you to learn more about the farmers in your area that make life possible. 

Behind Every Food There Is a Farmer

Farmers and ranchers make us just 1.3% of the employed U.S. population. In 1960, the average U.S. farmer fed about 26 people. Today, that number has grown to 155 people. American farmers represent one of the most important — and often most forgotten — groups of workers in our country. Without them, we’d all starve. Our farmers need our support!

In order to keep up with America’s population growth, the Ag industry will need to grow more food in the next 50 years than in the past 10,000 years combined, and it needs to do it without depleting precious natural resources. 

That’s where terms like “conscious farming” and “regenerative agriculture” come into play. The connection from the soil to the plant to the farmer to your table is one giant circle. At Gills Onions, we know that healthy soil leads to healthy plants, and healthy soil benefits generations. That’s why we control every part of the growing process from seed to packaging. Our mission is to be fully aware of the impact our efforts as one of the largest fresh-cut processing plants in the world have on the environment. 

Over the years, Gills Onions has been able to reduce our usage of chemicals and minimize our impact on the air, land, water, and other energy resources that surround us. We do so through verified sustainable ag practices like:

  • Increasing plant yields per acre and decreasing the amount of land required for growing 
  • Innovative seed development that reduces the need for pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers
  • Integrated pest management 
  • Drip irrigation  

Additionally, Gills Onions is dedicated to our Zero Waste initiative. Over the past decade, we’ve developed strategies that have helped us move toward diverting 100% of our waste into productive outlets. Our company’s waste diversion reached 99.2% in 2018. 

Our Farmers: Steve and David Gill 

The story of Gills Onions begins with two brothers, Steve and David Gill. These fourth generation California farmers grew up on a small farm in King City, but they had big plans. 

Together they expanded the family business to more than 20,000 acres in the state of California. They partnered with other local growers to add an additional 10,000 acres of usable farmland to the operation. 

Steve and David personally developed our signature prescription for growing onions. Growing “The Gill Way” ensures that all of our produce is grown in the most environmentally conscious way and creates the industry’s most delicious and longest lasting onions. 

Today, Steve and David own dozens of agricultural companies ranging from western vegetable farming operations to vineyards and wineries. They are vertically integrated from their own seedling nursery, farming, harvesting, cooling, shipping, transportation, and fresh-cut produce as well as juice and plants.

Though they are some of the busiest people we know, our founders are intimately involved with daily farming operations and continue to lead Gills Onions as a family owned and operated company. The family is just a little bigger now. 

Our Commitment to You

Gills Onions is committed to providing you with the highest quality products and services in the industry. We’re also committed to taking care of the land we rely on so that it’s able to provide for future generations. We are proud to serve you!

We hope you’ll take a moment to support and get to know the farmers in your neck of the woods. 

Ready to try onions the Gills Way? For more information, contact our sales department

Know your Farmer