There was a time when greenhouse-grown tomatoes meant very little to North American consumers. That began to change in the late 1980s, when the greenhouse industry, originally developed in the Netherlands, began in earnest on this continent. Since then, the volume of greenhouse tomatoes sold at retail nationally has skyrocketed from less than one per cent of the market to 68 per cent, says Michael A. DeGiglio, co-founder, president, and CEO of Village Farms, the only one of the first three original U.S. greenhouse companies still producing today. The company, whose US headquarters is in Heathrow, Florida, grows produce hydroponically in 240 acres of greenhouses and by partner greenhouse growers. Village Farms is using technology and building greenhouses capable of creating the climate needed for growing, even in harsh environments, says Stephen C. Ruffini, CFO and a company director. “The future of greenhouse development is to locate them near high-consumption areas, no matter how severe the weather,” he adds.