Massa Organics

Massa Organics is a 4th generation family farm located along the Sacramento River near Chico, CA. Greg Massa’s great-grandfather, Manuel Fonesca, began rice farming in 1916, only a few years after the first rice crop was planted in California. Greg Massa’s father, Manuel, took over the family business in 1962 at the height of the “green revolution,” when chemical fertilizers and herbicides were widely believed to be the future of agriculture.

Greg & Raquel Massa returned to the farm in 1997 with a different vision. As trained biologists who had worked for several years as tropical ecologists in Costa Rica, Greg & Raquel knew that they wanted to make stewardship of natural resources central to their practices. To that end, they have installed recirculation systems to reclaim irrigation water, they do not burn any crop residue, and they have invested in nest boxes for wood ducks, barn owls, American kestrels, and bats.

Greg and Raquel have been committed to organics since they began managing the family’s 20 acres, and they are proud to have expanded their operation to over 200 certified organic acres since 1998. Greg’s goal is to pair the technological and mechanical innovations of his father’s farm with practices that have a positive impact on the environment. As he states on their website, “The water that leaves our land needs to be cleaner than when it arrived, the soil needs to be improving every year, and we must share our land and harvests with wildlife.”

View Larger Map
Markets:South Berkeley (Tuesday)North Berkeley (Thursday)Downtown Berkeley (Saturday)Season:
Year-RoundProduct: Whole grain brown rice, wheat berries and whole wheat flour, whole wheat tortillas, almonds, almond butter, and porkFarmer's Name: Greg MassaMailing Address: P.O. Box 535
Hamilton City, CA 95951
Phone: (530) 519-8628
Website: http://www.massaorganics.comFarm Location:
Hamilton City, CADistance From Berkeley:
156 milesSoil Type: Silt clay loamWater Source: GroundwaterAbout the Farm:
Massa Organics is a family farm owned and managed by Greg & Raquel Massa, in partnership with Greg’s parents Manuel and Mary Beth. They employ 1 full-time, year-round employee.Organic Certification: Certified Organic by CCOF since 2002Fertilizer: Cover crops and compostWeed Control: The Massas use flaming to control weeds in their almond orchard. In their rice fields, they control weeds through timely planting, tillage, water control (flooding), and crop rotation. Massa’s 300 ducks are raised in the rice fields where they forage for food and consume a significant number of weeds and pests.Pest Management: Timely planting and tilageAcreage: 221 acres