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The Michigan Celery Promotion Cooperative, Inc. (MCPC) is a grower owned marketing and processing cooperative operating in Michigan. The MCPC was founded in June of 1951 to improve the celery pack quality, to help price stability and to promote our members share of the Michigan celery industry. The MCPC growers plant over 55% of the total celery acreage of Michigan including celery for fresh market, processing and juice. The MCPC markets about two-thirds of the fresh market celery.
Michigan had 27 growers in 1999 producing about 1800 acres of celery. The number of celery growers and acreage are down from the early 1980's when Michigan had 60-65 commercial growers and 3400 acres. All commercial plantings in Michigan are produced on rich organic or muck soils. These soils have higher water tables and are found in the lowlands where the night temperatures are generally cooler in the heat of the growing season.
The MCPC has established rigid quality standards, higher than U.S. #1 and requires its members to pack all fresh market celery to those standards. The celery is delivered to contract sales agencies (shippers) that sell MCPC celery exclusively. The price is reviewed twice a week by a committee elected by the members and adjusted as necessary for current marketing conditions.
The MCPC also has a celery preparation or processing plant to utilize its member's celery. The plant prepares celery slices and stems for commercial food processors and the food service industry.