The Gravenstein Apple Fair, taking place on August 12 – 13 at Ragle Ranch Park in Sebastopol, is a celebration of Sonoma County’s heritage apple, the Gravenstein. The Fair, as the primary fundraising event for Sonoma County Farm Trails, also highlights the importance of agriculture to the county and its way of life. But the Fair wouldn’t exist without the ongoing support of sponsors who believe in the Fair and Farm Trail’s mission. One sponsor in particular reveres the mighty apple – Manzana Products Company, Inc. – the last remaining apple processor in Sonoma County.
A Storied History
Founded as Oehlmann Evaporator in the roaring ‘20s of the last century, when Sonoma County was a bustling hub of apple production, Manzana celebrated their 100th year in 2022. After a large fire burned their original facility, in 1945 the family-owned business incorporated, rebuilt and chose to name themselves Manzana in honor of their local workforce. Situated on Green Valley Road, Manzana has stayed true to their history of providing healthy, minimally processed, organic apple products, including juice, sauce, and apple cider vinegar. Sold under the North Coast Organic brand, as well as providing private-label products, consumers can find Manzana products in favorite retailers nationwide. Their products are sold internationally as well.
Visit Manzana’s website to learn more about their history and their products at https://manzanaproductsco.com/
Powered by Community
Manzana’s commitment to Sonoma County when other apple processors have closed their doors, reflects the company’s bedrock belief in the power of community that includes growers, the company’s 180 employees – many of whom are part of multi-generational Manzana families – and, of course, consumers who value organic, no sugar added, healthy food to nourish their families. Purchased by AGRIAL Group, a French, farmer-owned, cooperative in 2012, Manzana has benefited from the parent company’s investment in state-of-the-art equipment which means 2020s innovations sit alongside more traditional processing technology.
AGRIAL Group has also supported Manzana through what have been some tough years for apple growers. Securing a consistent supply of apples from around the US has been hampered by a variety of environmental issues, but Manzana has stayed strong.
Manzana + the Fair = Supporting Gravensteins
Manzana’s focus on community has led them to sponsor the Gravenstein Apple Fair for over a decade. Alissa Trinei, Manzana’s Marketing leader, has a deep, personal connection to the Fair as a West County native and resident – her kids grew up going to the Fair! She’s a passionate lover of apples of all kinds but has a soft spot for our tasty, local Gravensteins.
“Sponsoring the Fair is something I feel very strongly about,” she shared as we toured the Manzana facility, “not only is it a wonderful event that showcases the best of our local produce, but I also see the Fair as a way to try to keep apples in the ground here in Sonoma County.”
We couldn’t agree more, Alissa.
Thanks to Alissa and Thibaud, Manzana’s Director of Operations, for showing us how the “Manzana magic” happens, for allowing us to tell the Manzana story and for being an important part of the Gravenstein Apple Fair for so many years.
Remember the Gravenstein Apple Fair is happening on August 12 – 13, at beautiful Ragle Ranch Park in Sebastopol. Be sure to stop by the Manzana booth to pick up some of Sonoma County’s own Gravenstein apple juice, applesauce, or apple cider – you’ll want to try them all! The Manzana booth will be in Apple Alley, the new neighborhood where attendees can find all their favorite Gravenstein products at this year’s Fair.