James Parker

Blog Posts By Author

March 31, 2009 @ Whole Story
Ripe in the field - Santa Maria, California One of the great annual events of spring is the beginning of the domestic berry season. The true starting point has blurred because of global production, early producing varieties and weather protection technology (like hoop houses).
March 17, 2009 @ Whole Story
The coming of March marks an awakening of sorts here on the Central California Coast. With daylight savings time bringing longer afternoons, more folks are outside - assessing their yards and plotting what early projects can be squeezed in to take advantage of March's generally abundant rainfall. I'm among them, doubly so as this year is the first full spring in our new neighborhood (and my new backyard).
February 18, 2009 @ Whole Story
Pink Tulips - California Every year right around the start of February I start yearning for more color in my life.
February 4, 2009 @ Whole Story
Navel Orchard - Central Valley, California
January 21, 2009 @ Whole Story
Green Kale in the field - Oxnard California I love Greens.
January 7, 2009 @ Whole Story
Our super field guy Chuck in an avocado orchard in the Mexican state of Michoacán
December 17, 2008 @ Whole Story
Enjoy a bit of summertime courtesy of Florida, Southern California, Central and South America. Late season domestic raspberry- Oxnard, California
December 3, 2008 @ Whole Story
Early Winter Citrus
November 19, 2008 @ Whole Story
In my world, Thanksgiving is all about the side dishes.  For produce people, there is significance to just about every season.  But there is a special place in our hearts for the fall and Thanksgiving, which are the biggest times of the
November 5, 2008 @ Whole Story
Fall Salads – Pairing Pears and Nuts
October 8, 2008 @ Whole Story
Pumpkin Carving 101 My neighborhood in Santa Cruz is the area Mecca for all things Halloween. We moved there in October of 2002 and I was mowing the front yard one day when a neighbor came by to introduce himself. He asked me if we knew about Halloween and how much candy did we buy. I said no and a 100-piece bag. He said we would need three times that much and he was right — 300+ kids and four super size bags of candy later and my family realized we were in Halloween heaven. The 2005 backyard harvest
September 24, 2008 @ Whole Story
There are lots of things to love about figs.
September 10, 2008 @ Whole Story
By late August, many of the wonderful fruits of summer have either passed their peak or have finished harvesting altogether. Even as I mourn the passing of another cherry season, I always look forward to September and the one summer fruit that gets better and more interesting the further we travel into fall.
August 20, 2008 @ Whole Story
August is prime tomato season in many parts of the United States. To me, a tomato is defined by its texture. Flavor, moisture, acidity, and ripeness are all important but all these factors are meaningless if you have a tomato that is soft and mushy. What makes a tomato mushy and soft is temperature — if at any point a tomato is cooled below 45 degrees for an extended period of time, its cell structure will collapse. You should never refrigerate tomatoes at home for this reason.



Born in Mississippi and raised in the South (mainly Texas), James Parker’s first produce job was at 16 in a supermarket in Dallas where he trimmed corn, made orange juice, and put strawberries in plastic containers for 4 hours every day after school. James joined Whole Foods Market in 1986 where he initially focused on retail department design and merchandising- helping open more than 60 stores throughout the US. He has since expanded his interests to include the production and purchasing side of the business for fresh produce and floral. For James, produce is “still life- a physical manifestation of our seasonal cycles. Fresh fruits and vegetables connect us to our world in a way that is dynamic and ever changing. It is a way for us to celebrate the changing seasons and our changing world in a positive way every day.” James is also a painter, fresh food chef and advocate, sometimes successful gardener, avid sand castle builder and pumpkin carver. He lives in Aptos, California with his wife Erin, son Aidan, daughter Delilah, and cat Harry.