The Future of Blueberries Is Data Driven

In this episode of “The Business of Blueberries,” host Kasey Cronquist, president of the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council (USHBC) and the North American Blueberry Council (NABC), is joined by Joe Vargas, director of business intelligence at USHBC/NABC, and John Marshall, vice president of services at Bytecode IO. USHBC and NABC recently refreshed their organizational and programming strategies with an increased emphasis on data. A significant move to that end was hiring Vargas. Listen to meet Vargas, Marshall and the Bytecode team, and to learn about this exciting data endeavor. 

“At Bytecode, we’re a full stack data engineering firm. What we live and breathe every day is data platforms, technology and helping bring ultimately business vision to life. And we do that with deep technical expertise with folks who have been in this industry, working on these problems for 10-plus years.” – John Marshall

 “This is the new way of the USHBC and it’s the direction that we’re heading. It’s a data-driven direction that’s going to be able to pass insights off to the industry to be able to make those decisions they need. This isn’t just, what is our inventory? What did we sell yesterday? What do we anticipate selling? This goes into, what are we doing at retail? What are consumers looking for?” – Joe Vargas

“There’s just so many ideas and so much innovation utilizing data in all these different facets, in service and growth. And so that’s really, I think too, what John’s talking about. It’s not just about the industry data. Yeah, that’s the topic at hand right now, but this is just a stepping stone. This is the basis for what we’re going to be doing in the future.” – Joe Vargas

Topics covered include: 

  • An introduction to Bytecode IO and a discussion of the advantages it offers.
  • How Vargas and the Bytecode IO team plan to bring more value to blueberry data.  
  • How using data in new ways will benefit the blueberry industry. 


Crop Report

The Blueberry Crop Report is an update on crop conditions and markets throughout important blueberry growing areas. In this episode, you’ll hear from Rex Shulz in Michigan, Doug Krahmer in Oregon, Bryan Sakuma in Washington, Jason Smith in British Columbia, and Luis Veas in Peru. This was recorded on September 7, 2022.

Blueberry Boost

Get all the details on Blueberry Lane, our new trade show floor coming to The Blueberry Summit in Nashville October 5-7. Find out what the lane is all about, then reserve your seat for the summit here